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Movie Review | The Road

Movie Review
The Road
By Mark Baratelli

11/28/09

Rather than paying to see "The Road," give that money to a homeless shelter.

With its close-up shots of unbrushed (false) teeth, unshaved (Hollywood actor) faces and feet wrapped in (costumer-designed) garbage bag tatters, this piece of poverty porn (think Slumdog Millionaire and Precious) takes you on a rich man's joy ride into the world of extreme poverty and insults the people poverty and homelessness affects.

The two main characters sleep under bridges, in burnt out cars and ramshackle tents; they eat frozen crickets and abandoned cans of soup; they're emaciated, injured and hungry. Watching this in a room full of clean, fed and warm people, I felt gross. Not because I was not one of them, but because I was one of them and we all had all paid money to see actors act like homeless people.

Oh the horrors… lets go get a mocha when the movie ends, Peter.

Like some sooted Wizard of Oz set in a bleak almost colorless, dangerous United states, the movie shows a father and son's walk to "the coast" after some apocalyptic event, the cause of which we are never told. Along the way they're met with cannibals (twice), a man who shoots an arrow into the father's leg, a man who steals everything from the father except the son and at the movie's end, a sketchy-looking new family.

If this film doesn't move you to volunteer or give money towards the fight to end homelessness, you're as soulless as the Florida-styled condos taking over Brooklyn, New York.

The director begs us to go inside the hall of horrors that is poverty and face one dangerous, freezing, unblanketed scene after filthy, hungry, footless scene. He really, really REALLY wants us to see it. So much so, it becomes ridiculous.

I half expected to see a red pot and ringing bell appear in the front corner of the packed movie theatre when the lights came up.

"Ladies and gentlemen, if you thought this film was fiction, its not. Millions live like this daily. Please give what you can. God Bless You."

Yeah no sh**.