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Peter T Chattaway

The Way (2010)

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Link to our thread on Bobby (2006).

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Spiritual 'Way' is a family affair
Estevez's fourth feature stars father, Martin Sheen
Variety, September 18

Galicia's famed pilgrimage route attracts fillmakers
With its cobbled alleys, old convents and Gothic-Baroque cathedral, Galicia's Santiago de Compostela seems plucked, Brigadoon-style, from the Middle Ages as Catholic pilgrims mill outside the place where St. James the Apostle is allegedly buried.
This summer, however, Santiago was buzzing with new energy.
In a downtown garage, Fernando Cortizo was completing an exquisite thatched-roof cottage miniature for Spain's first digital 3-D stop-motion movie, "The Apostle."
Meanwhile, Alfonso Cabaleiro, Galicia's new media minister, met with Martin Sheen and Emilio Estevez to discuss Galician support for Estevez's film "The Way."
All these events are connected.
In 2010, Santiago de Compostela celebrates its Holy Year. The next won't come until 2021. Galicians are taking it very seriously. . . .
Variety, September 18


"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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Emilio Estevez finds his 'Way'

Emilio Estevez is hoping to plug into America's heartland with "The Way."

Pic, which Estevez wrote and directed and which stars his father, Martin Sheen, tells the story of an American who travels to France to reclaim the body of his estranged son, who has died in a storm on his way to the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage route. Once in France, the father cremates his son's remains and decides to complete the pilgrimage.

"It's a pro-life movie in the truest sense that it celebrates life and the global village that we all find ourselves living in," Estevez told Variety. . . .

Estevez is hoping to tap into the same Middle American auds who flocked to see Sandra Bullock starrer "The Blind Side." . . .

Variety, February 12


"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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Deadline New York:

When Emilio Estevez this afternoon unveils the World Premiere of The Way and starts meeting with distributors, he is ready to show research he's done that indicates that the film plays to an audience, and especially the faith-based crowd.

...

"... I cut 17 minutes out of the film, and found that the faith-based audience is under-served and hungry. I can look a distributor in the eye and say it plays with that audience. And I am glad to make a movie that isn’t based on violence, sex and coarse language.”

...

The film idea came from Sheen, who attempted the pilgrimage but had to cut it short because of a work obligation. I’ve seen the movie, it’s quite touching and easily the best film Estevez has made. It's hard not to notice that the last time Sheen was on a road trip this extensive, it was in Apocalypse Now.

Edited by Overstreet

P.S.  I COULD BE WRONG.

 

Takin' 'er easy for all you sinners at lookingcloser.org. Also abiding at Facebook and Twitter.

 

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kenmorefield likes it:

One audience member at the Toronto Film Festival who had done this pilgrimage himself spoke glowingly of how the film’s latter scenes captured perfectly the experience of arriving in Santiago de Compostela. The Way is the first non-documentary film granted permission to film inside the church, and the scenes of the pilgrims arriving, how each responds to the rituals, to each other, and to the dawning realizations that they are neither the first nor the last to walk the path they’ve walked or bear the burdens they’ve borne, is as deeply moving and passionately spiritual a moment as you are likely to get in commercial, narrative film. You know what would be a little miracle that would make me happy? If Christians who wanted to “send Hollywood a message” with their pocketbooks would eschew boycotting the next “R” rated slezefest that gets them all tied up in knots and try the reverse for once. Pick up the phone and call your favorite studio and say, “I’ve got $10 and I really want to see this movie.” . . .


"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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Edited by opus

"I feel a nostalgia for an age yet to come..."
Opus, Twitter, Facebook

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Andrew O'Hehir @ Salon.com interviews Sheen (a Catholic) and Estevez (an agnostic) about the religious and not-so-religious elements in the film. And how the film is kind of a remake of The Wizard of Oz.

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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It's hard to watch the trailer and not think "Bartlett, Bartlett, Bartlett, why isn't Josh picking that backpack out of the river, Bartlett."

Keen to watch it though.

Matt

Edited by MattPage

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"Apocalypse Sheen: The Sheen Clan and the Way to Redemption":

[Martin] Sheen, who is still married to Templeton, has been sober for 20 years and is now a devout Catholic, having had his faith restored by a series of meaningful conversations in Paris in 1981 with Terrence Malick, the director of Sheen’s breakthrough film, Badlands (1973).

P.S.  I COULD BE WRONG.

 

Takin' 'er easy for all you sinners at lookingcloser.org. Also abiding at Facebook and Twitter.

 

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"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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If all stories are really "the hero's journey" that would fit with The Wizard of Oz and (the one that came to mind with me) The Outlaw Josie Wales or Canterbury Tales (I may actually have to read that someday - any readable versions out there?).

for the search engine: theway


A foreign movie can't be stupid.

-from the film
Armin

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Darrel Manson:

If all stories are really "the hero's journey" that would fit with... Canterbury Tales (I may actually have to read that someday - any readable versions out there?).

I'd say that the only element of Canterbury Tales that fits the "hero's journey" pattern is the frame story in the General Prologue of a group of people on a journey to somewhere important. They never reach the destination or return from it, because CT is unfinished. After the GP, the frame-tale is more or less incidental as various pilgrims introduce their individual Tales. No one is really the hero, unless they all are--and that argument could be made.

A readable version? Depends on what you mean by "readable." If you just mean "in modern English," then there are many. Burton Raffel's is new & poetic without being twee. Nevill Coghill's translation (Penguin pbk) is everywhere, but loses a lot in translation. Michael Murphy's "Reader-Friendly" version in modernized spelling takes the fear out of Middle English.

The Way is one movie I'm looking forward to seeing this year. Or next.

Edited by BethR

There is this difference between the growth of some human beings and that of others: in the one case it is a continuous dying, in the other a continuous resurrection. (George MacDonald, The Princess and Curdie)

Isn't narrative structure enough of an ideology for art? (Greg Wright)

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This story refers to Machine Gun Preacher, Courageous, The Passion of the Christ (but of course!) and to this film, and which quotes Mark Moring.

“The Way,” opening Friday, is Christian in the best sense of the term. But “there’s no in-your-face . . . presentation of the Gospel,” says Mark Moring, who writes about film for Christianity Today. “It’s show, don’t tell. It shows a man who is honest with his struggles, and who finds redemption on his journey.”

A nuanced look at Christian spirituality, as in “The Way,” seems to be in vogue these days.


"What matters are movies, not awards; experiences, not celebrations; the subjective power of individual critical points of view, not the declamatory compromises of consensus." - Richard Brody, "Godard's Surprise Win Is a Victory for Independent Cinema," The New Yorker

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Just rewatching West Wing. So jealous of you.

Matt

When he spoke of the difficulty getting permission to film in the cathedral, I was tempted to ask if they didn't know he was President of the US?


A foreign movie can't be stupid.

-from the film
Armin

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It was maybe the episode at the end of season 2 that gave them the problems...

Ha - I haven't watched the show for years but I immediately knew which episode you're referring to - one of the best episodes (if not the best) of the entire show.


To be an artist is never to avert one's eyes.
- Akira Kurosawa

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/secularcinephile/

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The Way opened at one indie theater in central NC this weekend. I went to see it with kenmorefield's wife (Ken would have gone with us, but was covering another event). This one is definitely going on my top ten list for the year.


There is this difference between the growth of some human beings and that of others: in the one case it is a continuous dying, in the other a continuous resurrection. (George MacDonald, The Princess and Curdie)

Isn't narrative structure enough of an ideology for art? (Greg Wright)

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The Way opened at one indie theater in central NC this weekend. I went to see it with kenmorefield's wife (Ken would have gone with us, but was covering another event). This one is definitely going on my top ten list for the year.

I'd say this is securely in 2nd place for my year so far. Saw this with a good-sized crowd at the arts cinema in Asheville today, and it was clear from the sighs and laughs that the audience was carried along by this film. Based on what little I knew of this film, I was expecting a much more somber, downer of a tale, but I was surprised by the joy and frequent playfulness of The Way.

The regret that Sheen's character felt over the emotional distance that developed between him and his late son touched me profoundly. Multiple times throughout, I found myself thinking how important it is to create memories and share experiences with my kids. I think I'm a pretty involved parent, but it's still so easy to get caught up in the busyness and rote of school, work, etc. This film has challenged me to be more engaged and find special, memorable things to do with my kids now. Next year, the next decade, etc., aren't guaranteed for any of us.


To be an artist is never to avert one's eyes.
- Akira Kurosawa

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/secularcinephile/

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Finally saw this one today. Liked it. Found it a bit over-written, but appreciated the way Sheen underplayed his scenes, for the most part (one very noteworthy scene excepted). Also liked the way the various characters' self-understanding -- or their understanding of their reasons for undertaking the pilgrimage -- changes over the course of the film. (Though the final shot, combined with an early bit of dialogue of Estevez's, leads me to wonder if the religious element is subsumed somewhat under a general preference for exotic backpacking versus middle-class American life.)


"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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Rob Johnston on The Way:

Some reviewers have been quick to point out that these four fellow pilgrims seem reminiscent of those in Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales, where a group of 14th-century pilgrims tell tales while traveling to the shrine of St. Thomas Becket at Canterbury Cathedral. Yes, The Way is a similar “on-the-road” movie, a critical portrait of our confused and confusing times. But perhaps the better comparison is with the 1939 movie, The Wizard of Oz. Just as Dorothy found herself on the yellow brick road with three idiosyncratic friends after a tornado lifted her out of her Kansas routine, so Tom is lifted out of his humdrum existence by the shock of his son’s death and finds himself with three unlikely pilgrims as they walk the road, each searching for meaning and wholeness in their lives.

For all, the pilgrimage along El Camino de Santiago ends at the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Galicia. There, every day at noon, throngs of pilgrims who have completed their journey attend the Pilgrim’s Mass. After the final blessing, the botafumeiro, a gigantic incense burner that is hoisted aloft on ropes by men dressed in medieval costume, is flung from side to side in the cathedral, filling the sanctuary with a cloud of sweet fragrance as worshippers cheer. Though this had never before been filmed, Estevez was granted permission to use the ritual in his film, and this worship experience proves climatic.

Does that mean... rainy? Moderate? :)

Edited by Overstreet

P.S.  I COULD BE WRONG.

 

Takin' 'er easy for all you sinners at lookingcloser.org. Also abiding at Facebook and Twitter.

 

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This is streaming on Netflix now. We watched it this weekend and loved it. There's a bit of clunky dialogue, and I think it was a mistake to plop Coldplay and Alanis Morrissette into the soundtrack. But otherwise, it was beautifully shot and presented. I really like Emilio Estevez as a director.

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Rob Johnston on The Way:

Some reviewers have been quick to point out that these four fellow pilgrims seem reminiscent of those in Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales, where a group of 14th-century pilgrims tell tales while traveling to the shrine of St. Thomas Becket at Canterbury Cathedral. Yes, The Way is a similar “on-the-road” movie, a critical portrait of our confused and confusing times. But perhaps the better comparison is with the 1939 movie, The Wizard of Oz. Just as Dorothy found herself on the yellow brick road with three idiosyncratic friends after a tornado lifted her out of her Kansas routine, so Tom is lifted out of his humdrum existence by the shock of his son’s death and finds himself with three unlikely pilgrims as they walk the road, each searching for meaning and wholeness in their lives.

For all, the pilgrimage along El Camino de Santiago ends at the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Galicia. There, every day at noon, throngs of pilgrims who have completed their journey attend the Pilgrim’s Mass. After the final blessing, the botafumeiro, a gigantic incense burner that is hoisted aloft on ropes by men dressed in medieval costume, is flung from side to side in the cathedral, filling the sanctuary with a cloud of sweet fragrance as worshippers cheer. Though this had never before been filmed, Estevez was granted permission to use the ritual in his film, and this worship experience proves climatic.

Does that mean... rainy? Moderate? smile.gif

Heh. Heavy fog, I'd think.


I'm not drinking alone. I'm drinking with the Lord.

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Yep, yep. Two hours well spent. Thoughtful filmmaking; does take a few minor missteps here and there but never gets far off the trail. I suppose Joost finds his courage and Sarah finds her heart, and perhaps Jack recovers his brain as well.

This wasn't eligible for our Top 25 road films list (although it was nominated anyway). But if we ever redid said list, I'd consider voting for it.


Let's Carl the whole thing Orff!

Do you know the deep dark secret of the avatars?

It's big. It's fat. It's Greek.

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