I don’t do many personal blogs anymore just because it seems with everything else going on in my life – baby, husband, school and writing – that sitting down and writing a blog about some random topic just seems to never happen. Especially since my child likes to play with my computer if I have it open. But I am sitting here working on some homework and watching a new movie by Emilio Estevez called “The Way” which stars his father Martin Sheen. I had never heard of it before and while it was filmed in 2010, it only recently came to OnDemand in the past month or so. I had been seeing trailers for it and wasn’t too sure I wanted to watch it, I mean there are so many other big blockbusters to watch. But today, I decided to put it on just to see what it was about and I will say I am glad that I did.
Not only was I pleasantly surprised by the soft, rolling story that had me in tears from the beginning to the end. But also because in our movie world today its all about the big blockbuster, how shiny and graphic filled it is, that it has to be a major blockbuster with big names in it. While yes it does have Martin Sheen in it, one of the bigger names in Hollywood, you know he did this for the love of his son and you can see this. Emilio plays his fathers son in the movie – literally. It is always nice to see these two working together on the screen. Their dynamic is different then when we see Martin with Charlie on screen. Their moments together are very few and far in between but each time they happen it is meaningful.
I do not want to give too much away but the blurb on IMDB.com states:
A father heads overseas to recover the body of his estranged son who died while traveling the “El Camino de Santiago,” and decides to take the pilgrimage himself.
And it is that simple… a man loses his son and decides to take the journey his son could not make. Now, if you have never heard of the El Camino de Santiago, it is basically a pilgrimage taken by thousands each year from various starting point to the Santiago Cathedral in Spain. It is also called The Way, hence the title, or the Pilgrimage of St James. And it is a pilgrimage people have been taking for thousands of years. I won’t go too much into it, you can easily find out more about it by doing a simple google search where you will get thousands of hits from companies that take you one it, guides, personal stories, photos, histories and more. But first and foremost it is a spiritual journey in all ways.
This is a film about the journey of Tom, his son and those that Tom meets on his way… his reluctant journey mates who all come with their own baggage and desires and pain. It is a personal journey, a spiritual journey and about becoming someone he never believed he could be.
I wanted to write about it because by the time the movie end, it made me want to do something. Not walk the El Camino because I am unsure if I could physically do it right now but to express my enjoyment of the film. Is it an Oscar winner… no but it was a beautiful, moving movie that has made its Way onto my list of must see films for those I care about. Yes, there is a religious aspect to the film because of the fact that its a Pilgrimage but the main part of the story is about a man finding himself and coming to peace with the loss of his only child. We don’t see these movies enough and if they are out there we do not hear of them very often. Its hard to hear their quiet musings through the loud explosions that take over most of our movie outings.
I will say this, I have found that this type of film – a tight story with a small focused group telling it is a specialty of Emilio Estevez as a writer and director. He hasn’t directed a huge amount but I always enjoy it when he does because you can see the love he puts into it.
So in the end I will say… watch the movie and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.