17 Best Survival Movies of All Time

POSTED BY , UPDATED ON September 15th, 2014

Best Survival Movies of All Time

King Solomon s/o King and Prophet David once said, and so is written in the book of Proverbs , ‘The prudent see danger and take refuge…’.  Survival doesn’t happen just by chance but by profound wisdom, rightful strategy, strong willpower and tremendous courage and the survival movies need to be very carefully filmed, structured and directed. This is a particularly new genre hence most of the movies in the list will be from the recent past. Here is a list of the best survival movies of all time in which most movies have a mixed ending with someone, but not everyone, surviving at the end:


17. The Road (2009)

The Road 2009

The very thought of scavenging and cannibalism is nerve wrecking for a common man. However, this is what John Hillcoat’s post apocalyptic movie shows that in desperate times, people try desperate measures of survival no matter how weird and insane they be.

The film tells the story of a father and a son in such kind of a situation where they only have a pistol, worn out clothes, scavenged food and each other’s support to survive against cannibalistic bands in a post disaster America.


16. Frozen (2010)

Frozen 2010

Adam Green’s thriller will keep you on the edge of your seats for the whole of 93 mins. Three people get stranded in a ski chairlift in freezing cold, high above the ground. At that point they need to make a bold decision about whether to jump and risk deformity or even death, or just freeze to death by not moving.

When one of them jumps, and is devoured by a pack of wolves, this puts even more confusion, fright and terror in the minds of the other two.


15. Lone Survivor (2013)

Lone Survivor 2013

Al-Qaeda and Taliban have always been the centre of the world news since 9/11. This American war film of Peter Berg, starring Mark Wahlberg and Eric Bana, based on the novel of the same name by Marcus Luttrell dramatizes the unsuccessful US Navy SEALs mission, in which a four man SEALs surveillance squad was given the task to track down the Al-Qaeda leader Ahmad Shah during war in Afghanistan.


14. Buried (2010)

Buried 2010

Rodrigo Cortes’ thriller, starring Ryan Reynolds in the lead role, tells the story of an American civilian, truck driver by profession, who is buried alive inside a wooden coffin.

At first, he feels blessed to at least have a working cell phone inside the coffin, but later realizes that there is hardly anyone from the outer world who would care to help a person inside a coffin in the middle of an Iraqi desert. This indeed, leaves him all by himself.


13. The Way Back (2010)

The Way Back 2010

It was a matter of time before a World War II movie would get a mention in the list. Peter Weir’s film, inspired by a book of a Polish Army lieutenant Slawomir Rawicz ‘The Long Walk 1955’, tells the escape story of some war prisoners from Poland who walked over 4000 miles on foot to reach India from Tibet.

They dramatically make an improbable escape possible and later face some very adverse circumstances in their route to survival.


12. Meeks Cutoff (2010)

Meeks Cutoff 2010

This western film of Kelly Reichardt’s, loosely based on the historical incident on the Oregon Trail 1945, is a prime example of how things can go immensely wrong in case of a travel guide misleading the actual way.  Suffering from trusting a wrong guide, the emigrants try to survive and fight against severe hunger and thirst in an uninhabited land.

Later they face a dilemma of whether to put their trust again on someone for guidance, this time a Native American wanderer seen by mostly as a natural enemy.


11. Into the Wild (2007)

Into the Wild 2007

Sean Penn’s biographical survival drama is based on the true story of travels of Christopher McCandless across North America.

From his life, we learn that getting education is not just about finding a suitable job and earning some money, rather there’s much more than that to life and the whole life can be an adventure teaching us various different things through multifarious ways.


10. Cast Away (2000)

 Cast Away 2000

Robert Zemeckis’ adventure drama film depicts the story of a time-obsessed systems analyst FedEx employee Chuck Noland, played by Tom Hanks, who is left stranded on an uninhabited island after his plane crashes in South Pacific. He then must transform himself physically and emotionally in order to survive.

Hanks received an Oscar nomination for his brilliant performance in this role.