Thursday, 17 November 2011

The Way

Okay, this is what I’m talking about (i.e. insanity alert: God made me write this)! What are the odds that the next film I would watch after The Limits of Control (see previous review) would also be about a lone man on a mission across Spain who meets people on the way who give him vital clues for his journey of discovery? A million to one, Mr. Spock? And yet that is precisely what just happened to me. And no, I had no idea where The Way was set or what it was really about. Do not tell me that is coincidence. As you saw below, I do not believe in such things and never have. On the contrary, I believe, without a smidgeon of a doubt, that God put these two films in my way precisely at this time, even if for no other reason than to remind me that God is still there, still putting the pieces together a zillion times a second for all those able to see it. But of course I also believe God is trying to tell me something, to help me, as I said below, on my own journey of discovery.

I don’t want to tell you much about The Way because I want everyone to rush out and see this film (the way I wanted you to rush out and see Of Gods and Men). This has already been one of the best years for film in a long time and The Way is another proof of that (although you should know that film critics did not quite see it that way, giving The Way less than a *** average).

The Way stars Martin Sheen (whom I have admired since I was a kid and saw him in some religious TV show with Jack Albertson) and was written and directed by his son, Emilio Estevez. Emilio also plays Martin’s son in the film, although the son (Daniel) is dead by the time the film starts. Sheen plays Tom Avery, whose son dies in a freak accident while on the first day of a long and famous pilgrimage in France/Spain (to Santiago de Compostela). Tom flies off to France to collect the body and when he finds out what his son was doing, he decides to do the pilgrimage himself. Along the way he meets a Dutchman, an Irishman, a Canadian woman, an American priest, a Gypsy father and many more who will change his life. All of this is done in a subtle understated way that keeps The Way far away from made-for-TV land.

The Way is about people and it’s full of lonely people who are lost and trying to find their way. The Way is about God and how much more precious life is for those who know there is a God who loves them unconditionally (okay, that’s just my interpretation again; it’s never stated in the film). The Way is about life and how we live it (but not about how we choose to live it, as Daniel tells his father in a flashback). The Way is a beautiful, funny inspiring film (did I mention the actors were all perfectly cast?) and gets an easy **** from me and you will certainly find it among my favourite few films of the year.

1 comment:

  1. This one has been double-starred on my watch list as soon as I heard about it and am very glad to hear your reaction. Just wish I had some way of seeing it.