• Entertainment

The Best Recent Survival Shows & Movies

List RulesVote up the most entertaining newer films & TV series about people trying to survive. No reality series.

Survival shows and movies are often prime examples of exactly what we don't want to happen in life—like washing up on a deserted island. For most of us, running into a dangerous and potentially deadly situation isn't something we would normally consider. Fortunately, there are other people who do that on the regular we can watch on television! Granted, there are dozens of reality TV shows about survival, but this list focuses on the newer movies and TV shows about survival that aren't presented in a competitive format vis-à-vis CBS's Survivor. This list is for those of us who watch a zombie movie or TV show and run through the ways we would escape from/fortify our homes and make it through the outbreak. If you watch the survivor genre and do this, rest assured there are plenty of movies and TV shows to watch.

Whether you enjoy shows like AMC's The Walking Dead because you know how you would survive or you prefer to see how Les Stroud makes it from one day to the next in Survivorman or any of his other amazing series, you will definitely find some new and amazing recommendations on this list. Of course, you can find top survival films as well, such as the ever-stressful 127 Hours, among many others.

Which recent movies and shows about survival deserve the top spots on this list? Help decide by giving your favorites a thumbs up and adding any good movies or shows if they're missing from the list.

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  • Photo: Metaweb (FB) / Fair use
    Cast Away is a 2000 American adventure drama film directed and produced by Robert Zemeckis and starring Tom Hanks as a FedEx employee stranded on an uninhabited island after his plane accident in the South Pacific. The film depicts his attempts to survive on the island using remnants of his plane's cargo. The film was a critical and commercial success, and Hanks was nominated for Best Actor in a Leading Role at the 73rd Academy Awards for his performance.  ...more
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  • Photo: Universal Pictures
    This Hollywood drama is based on the events of the Apollo 13 lunar mission, astronauts Jim Lovell (Tom Hanks), Fred Haise (Bill Paxton) and Jack Swigert (Kevin Bacon) find everything going according to plan after leaving Earth's orbit. However, when an oxygen tank explodes, the scheduled moon landing is called off. Subsequent tensions within the crew and numerous technical problems threaten both the astronauts' survival and their safe return to Earth.  ...more
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  • 127 Hours is a 2010 British-American biographical survival drama film directed, co-written and produced by Danny Boyle. The film stars James Franco as real-life canyoneer Aron Ralston, who became trapped by a boulder in an isolated slot canyon in Blue John Canyon, southeastern Utah, in April 2003. The film was a co-production of the United Kingdom and the United States. The film, based on Ralston's memoir Between a Rock and a Hard Place, was written by Boyle and Simon Beaufoy, produced by Christian Colson and John Smithson and the music was scored by A. R. Rahman. Beaufoy, Colson and Rahman had all previously worked with Boyle on Slumdog Millionaire. The film was well received by critics  ...more
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  • Photo: Warner Bros. Pictures / I Am Legend/Warner Bros.
    Robert Neville (Will Smith), a brilliant scientist, is a survivor of a man-made plague that transforms humans into bloodthirsty mutants. He wanders alone through New York City, calling out for other possible survivors, and works on finding a cure for the plague using his own immune blood. Neville knows he is badly outnumbered and the odds are against him, and all the while, the infected wait for him to make a mistake that will deliver Neville into their hands.  ...more
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