Danvers Mail

Thrills Abound in High-Stakes Survival Tale

No Way Up


Genre: Action, Adventure, Drama
Year Released: 2024
Runtime: 1h 30m
Director(s): Claudio Fäh
Writer(s): Andy Mayson
Cast: Sophie McIntosh, Will Attenborough, Jeremias Amoore, Manuel Pacific, Grace Nettle, Phyllis Logan, Colm Meaney
Where To Watch: in select theaters and everywhere you rent movies on February 16, 2024

RAVING REVIEW: Dive into NO WAY UP, where a holiday trip spirals into a fight for survival, stranding Ava (Sophie McIntosh) and a group of passengers on her flight in the vast, unforgiving embrace of the Pacific. With a solid supporting cast featuring Jeremias Amoore, Will Attenborough, and Colm Meaney, this film weaves suspense with the essence of human resilience. Over a concise 90 minutes, it delivers a narrative enriched by the camaraderie and sheer will to live, despite its ventures into the predictable and some moments begging for a little more polish overall.

NO WAY UP celebrates the indomitable human spirit, presenting a riveting journey of survival against all odds. The plot thickens with the inclusion of characters like Rosa (Grace Nettle) and her grandparents, injecting warmth and complexity into the storyline. Under Claudio Fäh's direction, the film marks its territory in the survival thriller landscape with intensity and impactful visual effects. It wasn’t a perfect experience, but it was a solid survival film; it felt reminiscent of some of the classic disaster movies of the 70s, 80s, and 90s.

Despite minor hiccups, the core of NO WAY UP — the unpredictability of life and the incredible power of collective resilience — strikes a chord. It combines the terror of aviation calamities with the lurking dread of sharks, occasionally stretching believability but never faltering in portraying survival's profound lengths. Addressing the elephant in the room, NO WAY UP seems to be facing its share of undue criticism, overshadowing the reality of what the film is and what it was going for. Far from being dismissed as just another survival flick, it notably outshines numerous counterparts with its rich narrative depth, character evolution, and suspenseful edge.

To overlook NO WAY UP is to ignore its nuanced exploration of survival, character intricacies, and the compelling visual narrative that vividly brings their plight to life. Offering a thrilling ride that balances emotional depth with survival instinct, this film invites an unforgettable journey for both genre enthusiasts and those new to the thrill of survival narratives. If you’re going into this expecting it to be a giant budget, action-packed, five-star film, you’re likely putting a different level of what it is than the reality of the situation. It’s intriguing, and I wouldn’t say this was a B movie; it ended up being a fun ride from the moment the disaster struck until the last scene.

NO WAY UP secures its spot as a noteworthy contender in the survival thriller genre, proving that even amidst criticism, it can hold its own with a story that not only captivates but also resonates with the triumphs and trials of the human condition and, of course, giant sharks. This cinematic endeavor, while not without its flaws, is a story of human resilience, making it a must-watch for those who revel in tales of tenacity and triumph over seemingly insurmountable challenges.

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[photo courtesy of RLJE FILMS]

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