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THE ROAD (2009)

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THE ROAD (2009)

Friday, 13 September 2013 17:42

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Written by 

The Buzz:

        Viggo Mortensen travels through a post-apocalyptic wasteland (what kind of apocalypse is never mentioned, but my money is on giant meteor) with his son on their quest to reach the coast. But the road is fraught with dangers, from mother nature, roving gangs, and cannibals, forcing father and son to survive by any means possible.

 

Life of the Party:

        The main draw of this movie, in my view anyways, is the world in which these characters live, and the acting on screen. And of course the face you'll most associate with this film is Viggo Mortensen; he's pretty much what carries this film. Though this isn't the Lord of the Rings style Mortensen; think more like A History of Violence without the fact that he's some kind of killing machine badass. And while other actors certainly give some good performances, they just don't have the same impact and presence.

        The other thing that kept me watching this film through its 111 minute runtime is how masterfully this world is captured and conveyed to the audience. It's bleak, depressing, and sometimes terrifying (without spoilers, a brief scene in a house basement succeeded in thoroughly creeping me out). John Hillcoat did a fantastic job in capturing this grey, soul-crushing world and bringing it to the audience in a way that's totally believable and engrossing.

        Fans of intense drama and survival films can certainly find something to enjoy in The Road.

 

Potential Hangovers:

        The Road's primary sin in my eyes is being incredibly long and slow. This is not an adrenaline fueled thrill ride; this in itself is not a problem (not everything needs to be action packed), but so much of the film is just shots of the father and son sitting and staring, or walking, for whole minutes at a time it seems. I found myself drifting at times, wondering when something was going to happen.

        And when things do happen, they often have nothing to do with each other, or the story as a whole. It all comes off as a series of vignettes that were cobbled together into this larger storyline, with the long series of non-events in between to pad things out. I often found myself wishing that something of excitement would happen to break the cycle, and unfortunately when these events do happen they're often short-lived and dealt with all too quickly, so that very little tension is brought about by their happening. This also means that there's very little tension to release, meaning that much of The Road just sort of...happens, and the viewer is left to just kind of nod along and go with it.

 

The Vibe: Lazy Afternoon, Deep Thoughts

        The Road really isn't an appropriate film to gather your friends and brews around. It's more for that lazy afternoon, where you just want to sprawl across the couch/lay in bed, maybe with some kind of dessert beer or liquor to sip quietly. I do think The Road is worth a watch for fans of good cinema; honestly I think I only have so much in the "Potential Hangovers" section because the Netflix and IMDB summaries of the film made it out to be something it really wasn't.

 

Plus/Minus:

+ You can't help but be drawn into the world and setting

+ Great overall theme

- Story is slow and somewhat disjointed

- Very long for what it is

Read 780 times

About Us

Tanked Matinee is the place to go for good drinking movies. What do we mean by that? Simply speaking, we evaluate and recommend entertainment media based on how much fun it is to watch with friends on the sofa and a cold beer in hand.

Everyone knows "The Godfather" is a great movie, but is it as great to drink with as "Roadhouse?" We can appreciate "Citizen Kane" as a masterpiece of cinema, but is it as good a centerpiece for your party as "Santa Clause Conquers the Martians?"

Tanked Matinee appreciates film as art, but when you're kicking back on Friday night with a tall Rum & Coke, you're not looking for art, man, you want to be entertained. We're here to recommend the best movies for your night in, whether it's a big party, small get-together, or just a quiet night alone with a bottle of wine or three.

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