Peter Flinth’s epic survival story about two explorers, Ejnar Mikkelsen and Iver Iversen, is titled “Against The Ice.” The film’s protagonist, Ejnar Mikkelsen, is portrayed by Nikolaj Coster Waldau, who also co-wrote the screenplay with Joe Derrick.
Iver Iversen, played by Joe Cole, is a tenacious mechanic who, despite being a novice at exploration, ends up saving Mikkelsen’s life. The majority of Against The Ice centres on these two actors and shows how they coexisted for 865 days during the harsh winters of North-Eastern Greenland. You can see the potential of the human spirit when you observe such a strong survival instinct. You learn things about yourself that you were previously unaware of when you take a stand in the face of a storm. You confront your worst phobias. You awaken each day with the possibility that it will be your last. However, the fear of dying is not the only one. The nature of death is what gives you the chills. The fear of dying in obscurity never goes away.
So let’s examine the journey of two daring explorers, their bold expedition, and the unflinching decisions that enabled them to make history.
Against The Ice Plot Summary
The crew of the Alabama ship raised a toast on Christmas Eve 1909 in memory of the explorers who sacrificed their lives in search of the last uncharted territories of the globe. G.H. Jensen, Vilhelm Laub, Hans P. Olsen, George Poulsen, Carl Unger, and the young Iver Iversen, who joined the crew midway at Reykjavik, were among Ejnar Mikkelsen’s shipmates. The original crew list did not include the name of Iversen.
While on the rescue effort, Mikkelsen sustains an injury, and we witness him sledge J rgensen back to safety. The Alabama ship, which they had converted into dwelling accommodations, was pushed inside by other members. J rgensen sustained serious injuries, necessitating the amputation of one of his fingernails from his leg. Mikkelsen invites his shipmates to volunteer and join him for a second rescue effort as Jorgensen is now unable to do so. They were attempting to obtain a piece of proof that they knew would otherwise be lost to time. However, no one wished to volunteer for a mission that exuded death. Human survival in the Arctic was not possible due to the climate.
In the midst of the situation, Iversen offered to go with Mikkelsen. He’d always admired the captain and yearned to know what it was like to be on a mission in the desolate area. What, though, was the piece of proof for which Captain Mikkelsen was willing to put his life at danger once more?
Warning: Major Spoilers
What Did The Denmark Expedition Aim To Achieve?
Ludvig Mylius Enrichsen, Niel Peter Hoeg Hagen, and Jorgen Brolund led the Denmark Mission. They were there to refute the claims made by an American explorer by the name of Robert E. Peary. According to Robert Peary, the north-eastern area of Greenland was split into two halves by a canal. Enrichson and his boys went out to disprove him when he claimed that the island on the other side of the channel belonged to the United States of America. The problem was that they were were citing the American-made maps, which were in fact inaccurate. The three Danish explorers left without coming back. Ejnar Mikkelsen embarked on the search for Erichsen and his group as soon as the news broke. They were stranded miles away from the area where they believed Enrishsen and his group had perished because their ship, Alabama, became lodged in the ice. Mikkelsen had made one fruitless attempt, but he was not prepared to give up. You may describe him as frantic, yet while knowing that Ivery Iversen lacked any prior exploratory experience, he nevertheless made the decision to move on with him.
Against The Ice Ending Explained Was Ejnar Mikkelsen Able To Find The Evidence?
Before embarking on an adventure like the one Mikkelsen had, there were numerous talents that one needed to have, and Iver Iversen lacked all of them. He lacked one of the key abilities that every explorer in a place like Greenland required: commanding the dogs who hauled their sledge. They believed that before passing away, Ludvig Mylius Enrichsen must have placed the evidence in a cairn. But picture scouring such a wide area for a group of rocks. It didn’t seem like courage so much as folly. A suicide mission, that was. However, Mikkelsen and his novice partner persisted. They did not want to quit up yet. In the end, they discover the cairn that had evidence refuting Ludvig Enrichsen’s theory that Greenland was separated into two halves. But a bigger obstacle was still to come.
Even though they had gone a long way, they still had to go back to their base to meet up with the rest of their crew. They had to kill the weak dogs to feed the ones who still had the power to draw the sledge since their supplies were running low. Eventually, either from famine or excessive cold, all the dogs pass away. Burning everything that is unnecessary, Mikkelsen and Iversen begin to move quickly in the direction of their base camp. The fact that the rest of the team had abandoned them made the excursion much more horrifying. The crew thought that they had to board the ship because it was uncertain whether Mikkelsen and Iversen would even return. They had left behind enough food and supplies to last for almost a year. They returned so they could request a rescue operation from the Danish authorities. To their horror, however, the Danish government refused to spend money on yet another rescue effort they deemed pointless. They assumed that there was no chance Mikkelsen and Iversen would survive and return. If the government was not going to step in, J rgensen begs them to at least make a reward announcement in case anyone wished to volunteer.
When they discovered that their crew members had left without them, Mikkelsen and Iversen felt betrayed. They themselves didn’t hold out much hope for survival. They also constructed a cairn on their way back and kept the evidence inside of it, as opposed to keeping the evidence with themselves. One day, Mikkelsen has a dream about a polar bear damaging the evidence and destroying the cairn. They were in much better physical condition now, but he felt worried and decided to return with the proof. Since he was confident they would return, Mikkelsen believed there was no need to leave a letter. That turned out to be their biggest error. When a search team arrived at their base camp, they discovered that the pair had vanished. The search party’s note was discovered when they returned with the evidence. Being aware that that might have been their last chance to be saved makes Mikkelsen angry.
Ejnar Mikkelsen and Iver Iversen were recovered and returned home after being abandoned for about 865 days. They were given special recognition by the government since they had disproven Robert E. Peary’s assertion that Greenland was separated into two areas. One was Greenland, which belonged to Denmark.
Mikkelsen experienced hallucinations and once came dangerously close to dying at the hands of a polar bear. Mikkelsen and Iversen endured starvation and a situation in which even hope was transformed into something depressing. Their hope that they would survive was as shaky as the primus they were rekindling.
What then kept them breathing, though? Why did they embark on such a futile mission? I believe the solution is not so clear-cut. Furthermore, it lacks logical foundation. Every dream, according to Mikkelsen, contains some sort of truth. However, he does not directly mention that in order to make it your own, you must be sufficiently enthusiastic because this is the only thing that will keep you moving forward. On the road to realising your dreams, you frequently come across challenges that no man would choose to undertake. But such is the power of dreams that you can look past a dead end and ignore the hassles of life in the anticipation that one day you will succeed in your goals.
Peter Flinth is the director of the 2022 period drama movie Against The Ice. It is a motivational tale of two daring explorers who risked everything to survive.