You know, I like to consider myself a well-rounded individual. I like to read things, other than just blogs or sports stories on occasion. In order to actually feel like I am reading, learning, letting my imagination go, sometimes it takes a book to do the trick. An actual book, I say! A novel idea in this day and age, I know. So, one day a few years ago, I decided to read the Cormac McCarthy novel “The Road.” The Road is a post-apocalyptic story of a father and son, merely named ‘the father’ and ‘the son’ if I recall. (Note: IMDB lists them as ‘The Man’ and ‘The Boy’ so I might be wrong. A first, I know.) It details a world where few humans are left and it is a true fight for survival, for those that actually are alive.
Its a pretty slow moving tale, that basically captures a desolate landscape where the father’s love for his son is the only thing that keeps them going. There is hope that as they travel the United States, there is a safe haven for humans, where food is abundant and there is some modicum of comfort and possible procreation, at the edge of the ocean. That is essentially the premise for the story and as I read the book, all the while I pictured what I would see as I traveled alongside the duo on their journey. Well, the trailer for the film adaptation of the best selling novel “epicly renders the ruins of our country that was depicted in the book. From the clothing to the post apocalyptic sets, everything looks spot on.” I said that in an earlier post (the trailer is there too).
I was interested in seeing an adaptation for the film, because even though I didn’t love the book, I wanted to see if the film could be adequately adapted. The cast for the film includes Viggo Mortensen as the father, Kodi Smit-McPhee as the son (a little older than I imagined in the book), and Charlize Theron. Supporting cast includes an old TV favorite, Michael K. Williams from “The Wire,” who played, the epic, Omar Little in that series. That makes for some pretty strong characerization I would think.
I knew it was a difficult film to produce and to try to get people to see; the subject matter proves that, especially in these escapist times. John Hillcoat, of The Proposition fame, will direct. While I haven’t yet seen that Western, despite our esteemed writer hitting us with a Film U Missed on the movie, an early review from Variety ripped The Road. This was not an encouraging sign, claiming it derailed early on any Oscar hopes. We wonder about that though, in our Oscar Bait Fall Film Preview. Couple that with the delays the film has seen (it was originally supposed to be released last year) and you start to get a little concerned. However, I still have high hopes for the piece, at least as a rendition of what I read. I have less interest in whether or not the film has an appropriate ending or makes someone feel happy about what they have witnessed, but rather just want a sense of a strong adaptation more than anything. I still think that it can provide this and I, hopefully like all of you who have read the book (if you haven’t, give it a shot while there is still time), am eagerly anticipating the films release on the big screen (finally!).
The Road winds its way into theaters on November 25th. And for our full early review, you can read that here.