Celebrating a Consummate Dream
Daniel Dercksen reviews The Walk.
A definitive dream is magnificently celebrated in The Walk, a film that showcases the craft and art of filmmaking at its finest.
Although it’s a story we all treasure from the Oscar-winning documentary Man On Wire, through the eyes of visionary filmmaker Robert Zemeckis, it’s a new and fresh incarnation that takes us to New York in 1974, where Philippe Petit, a consummate French aerialist, surprised the city of New York with a high-wire walk between the towers of the almost-completed and partially occupied World Trade Center.
In the film, Petit, guided by his real-life mentor, Papa Rudy (another superb performance from Ben Kingsley), is aided by an unlikely band of international recruits, who overcome long odds, betrayals, dissension and countless close calls to conceive and execute their mad plan.
Robert Zemeckis, the master director of such marvels as Forrest Gump, Cast Away, Back to the Future, Polar Express and Flight, again uses cutting-edge technology in the service of an emotional, character-driven story.
It’s a walk you will never forget and culminates in a tense and emotional experience. When Petit (brilliantly portrayed by Joseph Gordon-Levitt), it was an overwhelming and tearful moment.
Don’t be surprised if you still feel shaky and unstable after watching the film, particularly in its IMAX format.
It’s a film that is ideally suited to 3D, and particularly in the IMAX format; you live and breathe every moment of the momentous walk, as well as other scenes where Petit practises his craft.
What contributes to the overall emotional impact of the film is that it is a passionate and poignant love letter to Paris and New York City in the 1970s, but most of all, to the towers of the World Trade Center.
It’s not simply a story about a man who defeats an impossible dream, but one that celebrates the joy of making the most of life, and not wasting our talents.
If you want to time travel back to 1974, The Walk guarantees to immerse you, heart and soul, into a story that shows how important it is to feed our dreams, and that nothing is impossible.
Make sure to see it during its first week at IMAX. I am sure you will be watching it again. It’s most definitely one of the best films of the year and one that will surely garner a few Oscars.