The Road

downloadThe Road is about as bleak and unexciting as post apocalyptic films get, but what it lacks in thrills it more than makes up for in heart. It’s a warm story about hope, survival and the love between father and son.

When the apocalypse hits a father and his young son are left to fend for themselves, wandering what’s left of the Earth in search of food and safety. Paranoia takes over and soon everyone they bump into becomes an enemy, the pair must fight to stay alive in the vain hope that one day the world can be rebuilt.

Had the kid, played by Kodi Smit-McPhee, been less annoying then the film might have been a little more moving however his irritating squeaks and childish sobs and his inability to stay quiet when 063102r2they’re being pursued by people out to kill and rob make him one of the most annoying child characters in cinema history. His dependence on his father and his childish naivety might be endearing for viewers with more maternal instincts but anyone less patient might find themselves wanting to jump through the screen and smack the kid around the head. Viggo Mortensen however delivers a brilliant performance as the desperate father who lives to keep his son alive and safe. His love for his son is completely believable and not once are his actions to keep his son safe questionable.

The Road is very slow and with little action it becomes rather laborious. There is no particular story and it plays out literally like a long road to nowhere. The end isn’t very conclusive and by the time you’ve trawled the_road28through mumbled, slow speech and occasional yet short bursts of action it feels a little bit of a let down.

Perhaps the sound levels aren’t great, maybe the sound man needs sacking or maybe I’m deaf, but more than likely director John Hillcoat needed to tell the actors to speak up a little. Don’t feel alone if you find yourself having to turn the subtitles on even if the last time you checked your hearing was fine, it’s not you and it’s certainly not your ears, the characters really are just mumbling their lines.

The Road is, despite its faults, a beautiful film to watch. The bleakness of the post apocalyptic world, the costume design and the special effects imagesmake it scarily realistic and the cinematography can’t be faulted. The film has a warm but very basic storyline, which, granted, works in a drama but unfortunately the lack of goings-on makes the one hour fifty minute run time feel like a decade.

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11 thoughts on “The Road

  1. A movie with a message or two. Not a popcorn movie. Good performances with good folks in it – decent appearance my Robert Duvall. I’m guessing that most people wouldn’t be inclined to watch it twice, but won’t regret watching it a first time. Based on a book, The Road. We can pray we will never experience such events first hand though similar things – or worse – occur around this planet on a daily basis. It’s not a garden for everybody.

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    1. I didn’t really enjoy it, the child annoyed me far too much. I can appreciate all its good points but it still nearly sent me to sleep with boredom!
      The book however, which I knew about before I obtained a copy of the film but hadn’t got round to reading, sounds like a good read.

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  2. This was a decent film but, man, watching after reading the book (hands-down my favourite book of all time), it could only suffer in comparison. One of the reasons I try to read books after watching the film/television version first! Good review.

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  3. Great review. I love post apocalyptic books and movies, but they do tend to be kind of like this one … meandering and sometimes rather preachy. About those sound levels: they are a major issue around here. Not just the voice levels, but also the balance (or lack of balance) between the music, sound effects and voices. Garry has hearing problems. I don’t, but I can’t hear the words either. It’s not just this movie, and you are not alone!

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    1. I have hearing problems too so I’m glad it’s not just me haha I thought my hearing had just got worse
      The music and sound effects were all fine, but the dialogue was either mumbled or just badly recorded, It’s enough to drive you mad!

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  4. I really liked this film. It was kind of a weird viewing experience for me three-and-a-half years ago. I was an American in a London movie theater watching a post-apocalyptic film set in America.

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  5. I saw this film in the cinema with my best mate back in 2009 and we really liked it. Annoyingly I’ve bought it on DVD around 2 years ago and have yet to re-watch it, dunno why. I can recall the film fairly good because of the drama and situations the father son get into, I also like some of the dialogue as there is some good quotable material.

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