Alive (1993)


Adventure | Biography | Drama


Frank Marshall




Ethan Hawke, Josh Hamilton, John Haymes, Bruce Ramsay, David Kriegel, Jack Noseworthy, Kevin Breznahan, David Cubitt, Gian DiDonna, John Cassini, Richard Ian Cox, Nuno Antunes, Gordon Currie, Sam Behrens, Michael Taylor, Steven Shayler, John Malkovich


In 1972, the plane carrying the Uruguayan rugby team crashes on the Andes Mountains, and considered dead, the survivors are forced to use desperate measures to survive.


I always wanted to watch this film but never got around it. I knew the story and that was enough to keep me away from it. Then yesterday I was in the mood for something "heavier", and I finally played it. It blew me away.

"Alive" is a remarkable, emotional survival film that demonstrates the determination of mankind and fight for survival. It's one of those films you wouldn't believe if you didn't know in advance that it's based on true events. It's one of those films that is an endurance test for the audience as well, because it is not very easy to watch at times.

I haven't read Piers Paul Read's "Alive: The Story of the Andes Survivors", but like I said before, I knew the story - we talked about it in High School and I read all I could on the internet - and I can tell that the film is a good transposition of what those people had to go through. 

The story of these young men, some who had never seen the snow before, that were able to survive for 72 days on the Andes is truly uplifting, and shows some of the best sides of humanity. Each person in this film is unique, you can easily find yourself sympathetic with the viewpoints of the each of them, yet at the same time you wonder what would you have done if you were in their place. 

"Alive" features an impressive crash sequence that skilfully captures the horror and helplessness of those trapped in that plane that hardly leaves you untouched. Same goes with the rescue scene, where the expression on Carlitos' face is worth more than words.

The portray a real story in the right way you need a great cast and the film sure has it. Ethan Hawke as Nando Parrado, the optimistic and irrational one, and Josh Hamilton as Roberto Canessa, the pessimist, stand out, especially because of the debate between the two men.


  1. I watched this at school when I was about 13 and remember it was hard to watch. It wasn't until I watched it again as an adult that I realised how uplifting it was. Great film.

    1. I wanted to watch this at school but never did, because the teachers always picked "Stand By Me" over this one, but I'm actually glad I didn't because I'm not sure I would have been able to appreciate it back then.