The Way Back
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- Director: Peter Weir
- Writers: Peter Weir, Keith R. Clarke
- Stars: Jim Sturgess, Ed Harris and Colin Farrell
- Release Date: November 2010
- Genre: Adventure, Drama
- Run Time: 133 min
Their escape was just the beginning
This is a film for people who appreciate epic landscapes and survivor stories. It has some engaging characters but not brilliant dialogue or complicated characters. Mostly, it is a visual film, displaying the vulnerability of a few people in a harsh, vast, beautiful landscape. They must depend on each other, and they develop an intimacy based on their shared struggle rather than on deep conversations and emotional revelations, or at least, not until a young girl joins them. Weir seems to be commenting on the yin yang of masculinity/femininity at times in this film. I also liked the subtle underlying commentary on the brutal oppression of the Soviet regime under Stalin.
All of the actors were good; Farrell adds a touch of humor, Sturgess portrays anguish well, and Harris is a good tough old guy–his usual persona. By the way, I tried to review this film on The New York Times website but apparently I’ve been banned there, for criticizing Manohla Dargis once too often I suppose. In her bizarre review, she complains that Farrell is too good-looking to be a Russian gangster. What this assessment is based on I can’t imagine, doubt Dargis hangs with Russian gangsters.