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Netflix has a gripping new number-one movie - and it's a critical smash

Fantastic new drama from Netflix is eyeing up the Oscars.

Netflix has a gripping new number-one movie - and it's a critical smash
Marc Chacksfield
06 January 2024

We may have only dipped our big toe into 2024 but Netflix has already released what is set to be one of the movies of the year and it's headed straight to the number-one spot.

Society Of The Snow is the latest movie from J.A. Bayona. While the Spanish director is famed for his work on the Jurassic Park franchise and The Lord Of The Rings TV show, he is no stranger to adapting true tales for the big screen, having also directed true-life tsunami drama The Impossible.

Now he has had adapted the well-told tale of 16 members and supporters of a Uruguayan rugby team who survived a plane crash in the Andes in the Seventies, by using extreme measures.

The story was the basis of another big film which was released some 30 years ago - Alive, directed by Frank Marshall.

Bayona has put his own stamp on the story, though, with the reviews of Society Of The Snow praising both the acting and the direction...

Netflix has a new number-one movie - and it's a critical smash
Image Credit: Netflix

The Financial Times reckons: "Society of the Snow is realist cinema on a formidable level of execution, yet it’s troubling to think of such formidable technical expertise being used to minutely recreate real-life horror as Sensurround-type spectacle."

Vanity Fair notes: "No film could fully capture the awfulness of this experience. But despite some of Bayona’s irksome flair, Society of the Snow does a sturdy enough job getting the point across."

The Wall Street Journal writes: "For all the sensationalism of what was a very real ordeal, any accounting of it requires respect, both for the dead and for the living. Mr. Bayona more than meets that standard."

The Observer says: "Bayona focuses on the humanity not the sensationalism, showcasing poignant moments of love and care between the characters. It’s a tearjerker at times, sure, but what remains is how much a person can endure under impossible circumstances."

Empire says: "A viscerally rendered plane crash gives way to an affecting story of humanity and survival. Bayona is on impressive form here."

Rotten Tomatoes has Society Of The Snow at an impressive 89% right now, with the audience score at 85%. It's a hit for Netflix, too, with Flix Patrol noting that the film has gone straight into the top spot, knocking Rebel Moon into second place.

Spain is a big fan of the movie, too, having selected it for the Best International Feature Film at the 96th Academy Awards.

  • Society Of The Snow is part of ShortList's What To Watch guide this week...