At a hectic airport, two strangers get bumped from their flights to extremely time-sensitive engagements: he’s an expert surgeon who’s got to get to a Baltimore hospital in time for a delicate procedure; she’s an accomplished photojournalist on her way to her own destination wedding. They catch an off-the-books flight with a small, independent operator, but ultimately get what they pay for when that craft malfunctions and crash-lands on a snowy mountain, leaving the pair injured and helpless. If they intend on returning to civilization with their lives, it’ll take all of their resourcefulness and convenient medical know-how to survive.

That’s the setup for The Mountain Between Us, a new wilderness drama due October 20. It doesn’t sound so radically different from the other man-versus-the-elements dramas we’ve seen in recent years — The Grey minus the wolves, All Is Lost minus the ocean. But the distinguishing component of this film in specific is the personnel list; a pair of heavyweights have taken on the lead roles, with Kate Winslet playing shutterbug Ashley and Idris Elba portraying the good doctor Ben. The directorial talent attached should raise an eyebrow or two as well, as accomplished Palestinian filmmaker Hany Abu-Assad has gone Hollywood for the project. This could be a taut story of human willpower triumphing over adversity, not unlike his award-festooned Omar, or it could land somewhere close to Abu-Assad’s last English-language effort, the straight-to-DVD embarrassment The Courier.

Fox has thrown their considerable weight behind the project, and while it checks a lot of the Good Autumn Movie boxes — the right stars, a respected overseas director, based on a true story — a series of delays and constant casting changes cast a bit of doubt on this film’s future. At least, for now, we know one thing to be immutably true: that is one humdinger of a bad title. Did someone see the one-sheet poster for The Space Between Us and think, “My god?”

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