No matter the format, art has always sought to capture the human story in one way or another. They are the same stories that we told each other in the damp caves of prehistory, and they same stories we will keep telling until our race is extinct. Scientist and philosophers love to pour over the psychological reasons why these types of stories entice us eternally, but it’s not so important to understand why as it is to acknowledge that they simply do, and any compelling film will by necessity involve some of these primal storytelling elements in one way or another. The categories are not secret; by simple virtue of what we are, what we think we are, what we dream about, what we hope for, it’s a question of going back to basics when you want to craft a good story.
Man is mortal, fragile, finite, and therefore any well-constructed story of survival will be immediately compelling. Take a moment right now and think about any great film you have seen where the hero was indestructible, where he/she had complete control over his environment at all times, where he/she was never threatened or limited by human-like limitations.