Flash Movie Review: The Way Back

It can be seen as early as infancy. Some may mistake it for stubbornness, but it really is not. I feel a person is born with it, this determination to succeed. I have seen some babies spend untold time on a single item or toy until they came to some sort of conclusion in figuring it out. For all my years working in fitness centers, I have seen adults with walkers or in wheelchairs struggling against their own bodies to lift a weight or walk the track. I am in awe of the determined drive they have in achieving their goal. There are stories that come out that talk about something that seems humanly impossible. One such true story is Slavomir Rawicz’s book “The Long Walk: The True Story of a Trek to Freedom” which inspired this Academy Award nominated movie. The year was 1940 as the world was breaking out into war. A group of men sentenced to a Siberian prison camp made their escape in the dead of winter. From the frigid arctic cold to the unbearable heat of the Gobi desert to the heights of the Himalayas, they walked 4000 miles as they made their way to India. I know, this story sounds unimaginable; but it made for a riveting film that was beautifully directed by Peter Weir (The Truman Show, Dead Poet’s Society). Jim Sturgess (One Day, Cloud Atlas) played the wrongly accused Polish prisoner Janusz. His skills would help the small band of escapees on their perilous journey. The casting for this dramatic adventure was a major asset in bringing the story to life. Among the actors were Ed Harris (A Beautiful Mind, A History of Violence) as Mr. Smith, Colin Farrell (Phone Booth, Total Recall) as Valka, Mark Strong (Body of Lies, Kick-Ass) as Khabarov and Saoirse Ronan (The Host, Atonement) as Irena. The scenes were so thoughtfully set up that I easily accepted everything as being real. In fact, I felt a shiver as I watched the men struggling in the cold harsh conditions. Though the film was long I never felt bored; even in simple scenes that seemed unnecessary, I felt the director was accurately portraying the group’s physical and emotional struggles. This really was an amazing feat of human strength that was done justice by this film. Some scenes had Russian and Polish with English subtitles. A few scenes briefly showed blood.

 

3 1/3 stars — DVD

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About moviejoltz

From a long line of movie afficionados, one brother was the #1 renter of movies in the country with Blockbuster, I am following in the same traditions that came before me. To balance out the long hours seated in dark movie theaters, I also teach yoga and cycling. For the past 3 years, I have correctly picked the major Oscar winners... so join me as we explore the wonder of movies and search for that perfect 4 star movie.

Posted on September 13, 2013, in Drama and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 10 Comments.

  1. That sounds like a movie I would love to see. Putting it on my list!

  2. a bit of a rabbit proof fence feel. Sounds good.

  3. Several years ago I read The Long Walk by Sławomir Rawicz,. It is one of my favorite adventure books (I don’t really care if it’s real or fiction)…. but to have Peter Weir direct a film based on this book is exciting! Your review has me stoked! (And with all this hot weather in Arizona I would welcome a “Siberian shiver”) 🙂

    • I am so excited that you read the book. After seeing this movie, I would certainly enjoy you telling me how it compared to the book. I hope you have as much of a positive experience as I had watching this amazing movie. Enjoy the cold, so to speak. lol

  4. I am now planning on seeing this one. Thanks for the review!

  5. Enjoyed the movie when i first caught it in the cinemas.
    It felt a little weird that they seemed to have these little educational moments interspread into the story itself. Then again, it was co-produced by National Geographic,…

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