Tuesday, March 2, 2010

The Road: Review

The Road... or the most difficult movie you might ever see in your life.
The Road is a lot like The Book Of Eli without the religion and the bad assness and more on humanity and the will to live in a world where everything has gone to hell. We follow the story of a father and son who are basically just wandering the post-apocalyptic world and are just trying to survive by any means possible while still trying to hold firm to being the good guys, to being humane in an inhumane world. And along the way they meet other people, who are pretty much trying to kill and eat them.
The Road was originally a book written Cormac McCarthy who also did No Country For Old Men and I'm so happy the Coen Brothers weren't here to fuck this movie up because I loved and loathe this movie so so much. Because this film is hella dark.
It sets up this post-apocalyptic world where everything is so fucked up that the only logical thing to do is suicide. There is a scene in this movie where Charlize Theron is trying to convince her family to kill themselves because "all the other families are doing it." The Road is like one of those movies you like a lot but never ever want to watch again because it is such agony watching the characters in this movie.
I'm just going to level with you now so that you're prepared when you watch this. There are two versions to this movie. The theatrical version which everyone in the US saw was a shorter version of the movie with all it's cannibalism scenes cut out. The movie I downloaded was the full movie. And it was horrifying. There were moments in the film that I was so ready to just turn off the TV and cry because it was so horrible.
One particular scene that was a big controversy in the book and the reason why it was taken out of the original cut was a scene where two parents were roasting their baby over a fire. Disturbing, gut-wrenching, powerful. You could still see the baby's nose, fingers, ears, everything even when it was charred. Another scene they called the meat market scene was a gang keeping a bunch of weak people and harvesting their organs for food. I'm not going to say anymore.. If you want to see it, I warn you it will shake you to your core.
And while it was dark and disturbing, there was also such a beauty to this film. Maybe it's just me but I found the destruction and this bleak world of emptiness to be incredibly gorgeous. The Road was so dark to the point that it was poetic. Yeah that's what it was, the movie was like some sort of epic lyrical poem about none existence and the end of the world and humanity.
And the movie does have some moments of heart in it particularly with the two characters and how this father is trying to impart wisdom and morals to his son even when all seems lost. There is that glimmer of hope that comes with the tribulations of the two main characters who were fantastically portrayed by Viggo Mortensen and Kodi McPhee.
Viggo Mortensen looks....... ugly in this. I don't know what the hell the make up department did with him but he looked so awful, Christian Bale from The Machinist would have looked like a friggin stud if he was standing next to Viggo Mortensen. And he has announced that he's retiring after The Road. What a role to end a career with. His character was broken down in this movie, he was the embodiment of the hopeless situation of mankind but still has that glimmer of hope in his eyes which were gorgeous to look at for some reason. Forget Aragon man, this father is the greatest hero character in the last decade of film.
Other great performances worth mentioning are Robert Duvall who plays a dying wanderer who encounters the father and son and get's invited to have dinner with them in one of the most heartwarming scenes of 2009 in my opinion. I also loved Molly Parker who is only in this for 10 seconds but said volumes and volumes in her eyes just like Viggo Mortensen's character. And also Charlize Theron who proves you can still be unbelievably hot during the apocalypse. 
I have absolutely no complaints for this movie, everything was powerfully endearing in all it's destruction and darkness. I presents a great message, had phenomenal acting from every possible speaking role in the movie and some of the most soul provoking images in any post-apocalyptic film I've seen. The Road could very well be the most important post-apocalyptic film ever made.
Wait.. WHAT? It didn't even get one Oscar nomination? Booooo!

RATING: 9/10


Samantha Chow said...

now i feel like watching this movie dy!

Enid said...

That is the best review that I have read, and I have probably read every review that there is, and saw every Q & A that Viggo painstakingly attended to promote this movie. He went well above and beyond, as he is such a fine human being. I had no idea that there were 2 versions of this film. The marketing of this film was totally F#*#*d up--it came out at a time when there were other Apocalyptic Circus movies, after being held back for about a year, and then went to only a certain amount of cities before being released everywhere. To not be nominated for any Oscar is a crime--atleast for best adaptation from a book--the excruciating emotional work that was done, particularly by Viggo & Kody, and the entire cast--and under horrific weather conditions--renders this an unsung masterpiece.

Ryanne said...

Oscar is only interested in mainstream movies... 500 Days of Summer, in my humble opinion, is a very good movie and yet Oscar left them out.

Nicholas, you always have this amazing talent of making me watch a movie I didn't want to watch or I didn't know exist. Thank you ;)

"I" the writer said...

9 out of 10 huh...DAMN! MUST!! find it!

Wilfred said...

Great movie. Depressing all throughout.

Fidel Antonio Medel said...

I saw the 'sanitized' version. Reading your review now, I realized how much I missed. Boo!

movie downloads said...

Very interesting review provided by you. I have read the novel but not yet seen the movie but after reading your blog it seems that its a faithful adaptation of novel that offers something new. Thanks for sharing this blog.

daitenshi2023 said...

is there any site i can get the full version? thanks


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