This movie, The Road, is not for the faint-hearted. The setting is in a post-apocalyptic era when the world is slowly crumbling and very few humans are still alive. Viggo Mortensen portrays the Man; no names are given. A young actor named Kodi Smit-McPhee portrays his son, Boy. Through flashbacks, it appears that Boy’s mother has committed suicide, not wishing to live the horrific life that is left to those on earth.
The Man and the Boy are viewed walking toward the south where they hope the climate will be warmer; the Man pushes a shopping cart with all their possessions in it. They stop in various shops and houses to search for food which is scarce, having been foraged by the few people left in these circumstances. The great fear is that they will encounter cannibals who are desperate for food.
The most frightening episode shows the Man and Boy searching a cellar where they come upon several nude bodies that have been locked in and who try to prevent them from leaving. As they leave, they see a group of men, supposedly the jailers of the persons in the cellar, entering the house. The Man and Boy manage to elude these captors.
In their travels, they come upon an old man, played by Robert Duvall, with whom they share some canned food which they have found in a house. You would never recognize Robert Duvall though. In another incident, a thief walks off with their shopping cart while they are inside a house. When they catch up with the thief, the Man takes back their belongings, along with the thief’s clothes, leaving him standing their naked. This disturbs the Boy who keeps asking his father if they are the good guys.
Predictably, the father becomes ill and is no longer able to go on. The ending is sad but hopeful as the Boy is left on his own. Rather than reveal the ending, it is suggested that you see the film which is thought-provoking and upsetting. You might ask “What would I do in a similar circumstance? Would I want to continue on?”
The Road is not a feel-good movie, but it is worth watching. You may remember Viggo Mortensen from other films including G.I. Jane and A Walk on the Moon.
Movie – The Road (2009)