The Way Back isa remarkable journey that everyone of all ages should be exposed to. The filmmakers basic technique of lack of an antagonist or narrator gives this remarkable journey by a band of escapees during the Soviet regime in the ’40s an odd POV style that draws you in. Starring Peter Weir guiding Colin Ferrell, Saoirse Ronan, Jim Sturgess, and Ed Harris, a powerful band of actors who don’t let their ego’s effect the group’s synergy. While the inevitable question of the veracity of the escape is still in doubt and hinders the film from overcoming the miracles that occur during their perilous 4,200-mile trek to freedom, the movie is a hit regardless. Despite this, the linear narrative that plays out has enough humor and heart to stagger through the awe-inspiring scenery, resulting in an entertaining film about the will for survival.
Set in the 1940s, Janusz (Sturgess) is imprisoned in a Soviet gulag camp in Siberia after his tortured wife signs a confession that he is a spy against the Communist Party. While at the camp, Janusz meets Khabarov (Mark Strong) who claims to know a way out. After gathering supplies, Janusz and six others — Mr. Smith (Harris), Valka (Ferrell), Zoran (Dragos Bucur), Voss (Gustaf Skarsgård), Tomasz (Alexandru Potocean), and Kazik (Sebastian Urzendowsky) — seize the moment in a blinding snowstorm and escape. As they head south for Mongolia in the hope of freedom, they meet Irena (Ronan) and reluctantly allow her to join them. In order to survive, they have to band together and urge each other to push on despite the lives lost along the way.
Peter Weir and Keith R. Clarke wrote the script loosely based on The Long Walk: The True Story of a Trek to Freedom by Polish author Sławomir Rawicz. Unfortunately this is the part that is their downfall, only due to speculation of the books veracity. The reality of the book by Rawicz is under dispute from a number of sources, and whether it is a true story of... [continues]
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