Monday, November 30, 2009

The Road to nowhere, alright

No doubt there will be feet a plenty pitter-pattering their way to the nearest cineplex with the opening The Road, based on Cormac McCarthy's novel. Of course Oprah liked it so it (the novel) must be good, right? I feel like I'm a minority of one. It wasn't just the daytime talk queen who loved this thing but a heck of a lot of critics, real or otherwise. But not me. This has to be one of the most plodding, repetitive, minimalist, lacking-in-drama, uninteresting character (had enough?) novels, to come along. Who knows what its popularity is about? A fascination with the end of the world? Continuing goodwill from McCarthy's saccharine All the Pretty Horses? Or simply a sweet story about a dad and his son, post-apocalypse? Inevitably the novel has hit the big screen. And the movie too is getting good reviews. (Rotten Tomatoes has a critics' collective 71% approval rate.) I'll withold comment until - or if - I actually see it. Viggo Mortensen, with his dark emotional countenance, is perfect for the lead. The boy is played by Kodi Smit-McPhee. The movie is directed by another Aussie, John Hillcoat (2005's The Proposition). I'm even willing to think this could be a case where the movie is better than the book. But that wouldn't be too hard.

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