Historical experience shows that a person, who is forcibly or accidentally placed in conditions radically different from the social environment to which he is accustomed to, can change significantly and sometimes drastically. Put in the conditions of survival, a man behaves differently in comparison with ordinary life situations sometimes committing very cruel actions which are verging on between a human and a beast.
The most vivid examples illustrating how people overcome inhuman conditions trying to survive are the novel of William Golding's "Lord of the Flies" and the movie "Alive" directed by Frank Marshall based on the same-named novel by Piers Paul Read. Altogether, the works are very similar, although having some peculiar differences in the ending. But first and foremost, they are stories of moving beyond fears, baser feelings, and instincts.
The film “Alive” tells the story of people caught in a plane crash over the Andes. Being alone with nature, people have to deal with the harsh conditions of cold, hunger, which gradually rob them of the most important – the hope of rescue. In the end, of the 33 passengers only 16 have survived, who had to overcome a number of socially accepted norms, for example, cannibalism. Despite the terrible ordeal, the viewer feels optimistic notes, as he sees that people take incredible efforts to keep their human face.
The same convincing and overwhelming force leads abandoned children in the novel "Lord of the Flies". There has been nothing left of the bright and radiant pictures at the beginning of the novel when the boys as if nothing has happened are enjoying themselves on the empty island. Soon their carelessness disappears and finally they fall to the utter dark labyrinths of the human soul. Lord of the Flies is a social drama, showing a terrifying picture of human degradation via children’s relations. Life values in a civilised society have turned nothing in the wild conditions with different laws. Not all children managed to survive, and not all remained morally strong, often coming down to primitive instincts.
The difference between the two works is that in Lord of the Flies the boys are saved, while in the film Alive not waiting for help people make the dreadful mountain crossing to evade death.
Apart from the idea of surviving and remaining a human being, the authors, particularly Golding, showed people that the power of evil over the people is too great to joke with it. If mankind happens to be in such circumstances like the characters of Golding and Paul Read, will the people be able to overcome such trials, without the possibility of outside help?
Historical experience shows that a person, who is forcibly or accidentally placed in conditions radically different from the social environment to which he is accustomed to, can change significantly and sometimes drastically.