Movie Mom

Movie Mom


The Way

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some thematic elements, drug use, and smoking
Profanity:Mild language
Nudity/Sex:Some mild potty humor
Alcohol/Drugs:Drinking and drunkenness, a lot of smoking, drug use
Violence/Scariness:Sad off-screen death, some scuffles
Diversity Issues:None
Movie Release Date:October 7, 2011
DVD Release Date:February 21, 2012

In honor of this DVD Pick of the Week, I have three copies to give away.  Send me an email at moviemom@moviemom.com with “The Way” in the subject line and tell me your favorite Martin Sheen movie.  Don’t forget your address!  US addresses only.

A story about a father and is son comes to us from a father and his son.  Emilio Estavez wrote and directed his father Martin Sheen in a touching and uplifting movie about a doctor who completes the pilgrimage he told his estranged son not to make after the son is killed in a storm.

Sheen plays Tom, an affluent ophthalmologist living in Las Angeles, playing golf with his friends and worried about his son Daniel (Estavez).  In his late 30′s, Daniel has dropped out of his PhD program to roam the world.  Tom gets a call from a French policeman telling him that Daniel is dead.  He flies to France, identifies the body, and then impulsively decides to finish what Daniel had started, to walk the Way of St. James from  St Jean Pied de Port to Santiago de Compostela, 780 km/484 miles as pilgrims have done since the middle ages.  He will bring Daniel along with him, leaving his ashes along the path so that he can complete his journey.

YouTube Preview Image

Tom has no interest in the other pilgrims or in sharing with anyone what he is doing.  But there is no way to avoid the people who are walking along the same road and staying at the same inns and soon he finds himself sharing the journey with an affable Dutchman named Joost (Yorick van Wageningen), a bitter Canadian named Sarah (Deborah Kara Unger), and a frantic Irish writer named Jack (James Nesbitt).  People on The Way tend to leave their last names behind.  Everyone is just a first name and a nationality — and everyone but Tom gives a reason for being there.  Joost wants to lose weight before his brother’s wedding.  Sarah wants to quit smoking, but only after she completes the pilgrimage.  Jack is there to write a book about it and his editor is impatient.  But pilgrims are not always honest with themselves or each other and part of what they will learn on the road is what they are really doing there.

At times it has the feel of a television movie but the scenery is spectacular and benefits from the big screen and Estavez as writer and director has a good sense of timing and a gift for cinematic storytelling.  It is funny and heartfelt and inspiring and it will make you think more deeply about your own journey.

 

Parents should know that this film concerns the sad death of an adult child and grief of his father, drinking and drunkenness, constant smoking, drug use (involving a character from the Netherlands, where marijuana is legal), and some potty humor.

Family discussion: What was the significance of Tom’s being an eye doctor?  Did the pilgrims find what they were looking for?  How do you know?

If you like this, try:  “Riding Alone for Thousands of Miles,” a brilliant and deeply moving Chinese film about a father who completes his late son’s journey.



Previous Posts

Contest: Hey Arnold! The Complete Series
The football-headed Arnold and all his pals are here in this box set with all 99 adventures from the beloved Nickelodeon series. It's available exclusively at Walmart, but I have a copy to give away! Send

posted 12:20:14pm Aug. 29, 2014 | read full post »

Interview: Dylan Brody on Comedy, Depression, and Robin Williams
Dylan Brody is a comedy writer and stand-up performer dubbed "brilliant" by Robin Williams.  It was Williams' tragic suicide that inspired Brody to write a moving essay about his own struggles wit

posted 8:06:10am Aug. 29, 2014 | read full post »

Opera Flash Mob at a London Grocery Store
[iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/44UC6muN8KY" frameborder="0"] Sacla staged an impromptu Opera in the food aisles of a London grocery store. They planted five secret opera singers who were disguised as casual shoppers and store staff amongst the groceries who bro

posted 8:00:13am Aug. 29, 2014 | read full post »

Exclusive Clip: Juliette Lewis in "Kelly and Cal"
Juliette Lewis stars as a rocker-turned suburban mother of a newborn in "Kelly and Cal."  Here she tries to make friends with the other mothers, who treat her like mean girls shooing off a freshman who wants to sit at the cool table. [iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/

posted 6:00:09am Aug. 29, 2014 | read full post »

Love is Strange
Love is strange.  As this movie opens, a deeply devoted couple of more than three decades wakes up and prepares for a big, important, emotional, happy occasion.  They bicker a little bit, but it is clear to them and to us that these are reassuringly familiar rhythms for them, almost a contrapuntal

posted 5:59:53pm Aug. 28, 2014 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.