Monday, August 24, 2015

Movie Monday 8/24

I was really in the mood for movies this week, so we watched two of them on Amazon Prime this weekend and enjoyed both.

I've been wanting to see The Way, which was a special project for Martin Sheen and his son, Emilio Estevez (who looks so much like his dad now!) They both star in it, and Emilio wrote and directed it. It's about a journey hiking along the Camino de Santiago, a pilgrimage route that cuts across northern Spain, starting in the Pryenees along the French border. One of my closest friends hiked the route for three weeks this spring, which is why I was so interested to see this movie (though I wanted to see the film even before she walked it). Martin Sheen plays Tom, a California ophthalmologist whose son dies while on the Camino. When Tom travels to France to collect his body, he impulsively decides to finish his son's quest to walk the Camino. Grieving and surly, he sets out on the walk, barely talking to the other pilgrims around him, stopping at hostels in tiny villages along the way. Gradually, though, he gets to know several other hikers, each with his or her own reason for walking the route: Joost, a jovial bear of a man from the Netherlands; Sarah, a Canadian woman with a hard. sarcastic edge; and Jack, an Irish writer with writer's block. Together, the four unlikely companions travel along the Camino and gradually get to know each other and become friends, as each works on his or her own internal demons. I loved this movie - yes, the scenery along the Camino is stunning, as I expected, but it is also a moving, funny, warm story about personal journeys and emotional growth. Very uplifting, though it did induce a hefty dose of Exercise Envy in me! I so wish I could backpack again or join my friend on the Camino myself.

Saturday, we chose a twisty, fast-paced crime caper with an all-star cast, Lucky Number Slevin. Josh Hartnett plays Slevin, a young man from Chicago visiting his friend, Nick, in New York City. Slevin is mugged on his way in and loses his wallet and then finds Nick's apartment empty. Next-door neighbor Lindsay (played by Lucy Lui) stops by and says she is worried about Nick because she hasn't seen him and she wants Slevin to join her as amateur detectives (she likes to watch old Columbo shows) to find their mutual friend. Before they can start investigating, though, a couple of thugs come by and pick up Slevin. They take him to The Boss, played by Morgan Freeman. Everyone thinks Slevin is Nick, who seems to owe The Boss a lot of money, and he can't prove otherwise without his wallet. A hit man named Mr. Goodkat, played by Bruce Willis, joins the fun...and that's just the beginning. The plot is complicated and twisting, though the tone remains somewhat light and tongue-in-cheek throughout. It starts to feel like a modern version of The Sting, though it takes a while to sort out just what the deal is and who's behind it (and why). It's all a lot of fun, the acting is great, and we didn't figure out all the twists and turns until the very end.

Have you seen any good movies lately?


Unknown said...

I loved the Way, too. Some people feel it's not religious enough, but it worked for me.

Sue Jackson said...

It worked for me, too, Beatrice! From what my friend told me who walked it this year, I think the movie was accurate - that not everyone who walks it does so for religious reasons. I used to love backpacking, so I liked the adventure of it but also really enjoyed seeing the characters each work through their own issues.

Sandy E said...

I really enjoyed The Way. Will have to look for the second one. I watched Aloha last night; wasn't that great. Right now I am watching Mr. Hobbs Takes a Vacation with Maureen O'Hara and James Stewart. Nothing like the old ones. Oh and watched Dolphin Tale 2...Enjoyed it.

Sue Jackson said...

Glad you enjoyed The Way, too, Sandy. I have heard lots of not-so-good reviews of Aloha. I do like watching older movies, too, especially with Jimmy Stewart! I had never seen an Alfred Hitchcock movie before (can you believe it??) so my husband and I watched The Rear Window earlier this year. Now I want to see more Hitchcock films!