The Four Best Survival Movies in Contrasting Climates- Desert, Jungle, Arctic, Ocean

Sam Chiavetta, Contributing Reporter

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Everyone loves a good disaster story and these movies highlight the trials and tribulations of a few unlucky souls in various climates.

127 hours Desert

127 Hours is a survival movie that takes place in a canyon in the middle of nowhere. It is a true story based off the book Stuck Between a Rock and a Hard Place written by the Aron Ralston, the survivor. A full 100 miles away from all people and civilization, Ralston (James Franco), is exploring challenging desert terrain when he falls into a canyon and an 800 pound boulder pins his arm between itself and the canyon wall. Ralston spent just over five days trapped in this canyon and became so dehydrated, he was close to death. Ralston fell so far down into the canyon that he could only get 15 minutes of direct sunlight a day. Ralston had not properly prepared for his hike and did not tell anyone where he was hiking or when he was due to return. He realizes that nobody knows his location and at day four, he knows that he will not survive unless he takes the desperate measure of cutting off his own arm. He begins to cut his arm off with a very dull multi-tool knife. When Ralston cuts through flesh and hits bone, he uses his full body weight to snap both of his arm bones in a horrible, up-close scene. The trauma is so severe that he rips his nerves from his arms as the bone snaps. Eventually free, Ralston then must travel through unbearable heat to reach civilization.

Jungle Jungle

Jungle is a survival movie that takes place in the middle of the Amazon Rainforest. It is a true story, and a very jarring one at that. Yossi Ghinsberg (Daniel Radcliffe), travels to Bolivia and teams up with three other people to explore the Amazon Rainforest. (You know, the place full to the brim with deadly animals.) From there, Yossi gets separated from the other three and encounters numerous dangers, including starvation, dehydration and a dangerous river. He begins to have many vivid hallucinations and when he eventually reaches a village at last, his heart sinks to find that it has been destroyed and there is no one there to help him. At one point, Yossi comes across a tree covered in fire ants. To keep himself alive, Yossi shakes the tree and fire ants clamp down on every inch of his starved body. The very last scene shows Yossi standing, and you can see every rib and bone in his body.

Frozen Arctic

Yep, those are his legs bending the wrong way. You are correct in that assumption. This Frozen movie is definitely different from the other Disney movie of the same name. In Frozen, three friends decide to go skiing when the ski lift is shut down and everybody goes home for a five day weekend. The three friends are left roughly 50 feet up in the air in sub-zero temperatures. At one point, one of them decides to jump because the wires are too sharp and slick to climb down. He jumps, and to his friends’ horror, he breaks both of his legs when he hits the bottom of the slope. He then proceeds to get eaten alive by wolves as his friends look on. After that, another of the three manages to get down safely, however, he is also eaten by the wolves. Hungry doggies. Finally, the third friend finds that her hands are frozen to the ski lift bar and she has to crack them off. She has severe facial frostbite as well. Finally, she gets down thanks to a pole buckling. You’ll have to watch this one to see if she makes it or not.

The Shallows Ocean

That would be Nancy Adams (Blake Lively), sewing up a nasty shark bite with part of an earring. Adams is bitten by a shark while swimming alone on a private beach. She becomes stranded on a rock with the shark circling around it. While stranded, she takes off her jewelry and uses the wires to stitch up her shark bite. No time to celebrate her surgery skills, however. She soon realizes that high tide will be coming in and submerging the rock she is on, giving the shark access to her tanned and sleek body. Timing the shark’s circles, she swims to a buoy, a pretty good distance away. She barely makes it, though, being stung by numerous jellyfish along the way. As the chains securing the buoy are chomped away by the enraged shark, she holds on to the last one that brings her right to the ocean floor where the buoy is secured. At the last possible moment, she comes out of the dive and the shark impales itself on a steel bar. Crisis averted.