Sunday, 10 January 2010

Road movie

I've been reading good things about movie of The Road. Can it really be as good as the critics say? I hope so.

I had a look at the trailer on YouTube ages ago after having a chat with Tony Bradman who - like me - is a big fan of the book. The trailer seemed wrong to me in so many ways. It seemed to be making a thriller out of a book that was so much deeper than that. All of the events the trailer showed were in the book, but they just did not read like that - or not to me anyway.

The music was a big problem. The road describes an ash-covered lifeless world where the few remaining humans provide the only sound and movement. Incidental music seemed weirdly inappropriate.

I am also a little troubled by the idea of having a narrator. A narrator in a movie is almost an admission that the story cannot effectively be told in film alone. There must be good movies with narrators - though I can't think of one right now - but surely the actors and action should speak for themselves. I think I read that Viggo Mortensen was against the idea.

Cormac McCarthy approved it, but maybe that was simply a writer's ego getting in the way. After all, it allows more of his words through.


  1. You are right about being troubled about having a narrator. It's really distracting and it takes the viewer out of the film. It would have been much more effective without it. Still, it's a great movie, but don't expect it to be as good as the book - it's not.

  2. A narration is an admission of failure isn't it? If you need a narrator then the movie is probably flawed in some way. If you don't then don't use it. I had hoped to have seen the movie by now but I can see it will be another I catch up with on DVD. Thanks for the review though. That sounds pretty positive