A WALK IN THE WOODS

Editor’s Note:  The Phoenix Film Society hosted its inaugural Summer Showcase on August 10 – 13th.  The fourth and final film in the series, A Walk in the Woods, is due to be released in select theatres on September 2, 2015.

As we get older, we are often compelled to look back on our lives.  Too often we’re numb to our reflection and we need a little help to see the bigger picture.

Ken Kwapis’ A Walk in the Woods, is the story of Bill Bryson (Robert Redford), a famous, but unsettled novelist in the prime of his life.  A recent death serves as the impetus to take a journey.  Against his wife’s (Emma Thompson) objections, he decides to hike the Appalachian Trail.  The trouble is, none of his friends wants to hike it with him.  That is until the estranged Katz (Nick Nolte) volunteers.

Michael Arndt and Bill Holderman’s script, based on the book by Bill Bryson is a hoot.  Redford and Nolte play off of each other with a juvenile vitality. Nolte really steals the show. Nick Offerman and Mary Steenburgen round out a stellar cast.

The scenery is the real star.  From the rolling hills of northern Georgia, to grand helicopter shots of the foggy stone mountain caps in West Virginia, John Bailey’s cinematography exquisitely captures it all. The score by Nathan Larson adds a humorous layer to the movie, brightening up even the most dramatic parts of the story.  His score is accompanied by numerous pop tunes.

Our lives are journey.  Walk reminds us to cherish existing relationships, rekindle old relationships, and to stop every once in awhile but, never quit the journey.  You never know who will be there to be a part of it.

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