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post #1 of 27 Old 05-02-2011, 12:37 PM - Thread Starter
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The Way Back (2010)



Overview:

Nominated for a 2010 Academy Award (Best Makeup)! Four-time Oscar nominee Ed Harris (Apollo 13), Jim Sturgess (Across the Universe) and Oscar nominee Saoirse Ronan (Atonement) and Colin Farrell (In Bruges) star in this epic saga of survival from six-time Oscar-nominee Peter Weir (Witness, Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World). Inspired by an incredible true story, THE WAY BACK begins in 1940 when seven prisoners attempt the impossible: escape from a brutal Siberian gulag. Thus begins a treacherous 4,500-mile trek to freedom across the world's most merciless landscapes. They have little food and few supplies. They don't know or trust each other. But together, they must withstand nature at its most extreme. Their humanity is further tested when they meet a teenage runaway who begs to join them on their quest. A compelling testament to the human spirit, this gripping wilderness adventure is "Peter Weir at his hypnotic best" (Telluride Film Festival).



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Quick Specs:

'The Way Back' Run Time: 133 mins, Audio Format: DTS HD Master Audio 5.1, Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 (CIH Friendly)

Quick Thoughts:

Image Entertainment's 'The Way Back' just might be my favorite Blu-ray in my collection. Besides being a film that showed up with no fanfare, taking me by surprise by being both epic in scope as well as an A/V delight, it was a 4 out of 5 star film. What kept me drooling throughout was not so much for the film, which had great performances (Colin Farrell knocked it out of the park with his believable Russian accent), but for its inspiring direction by Peter Weir (Master and Commander) and breathtaking cinematography from Russell Boyd (Master and Commander).

From it's enveloping sound-scape to a filmic 35mm presentation, that for its type (film not a digital creation), is one of the best I have seen. The front sound-stage was as wide as its cinemscope presentation, and combining that with precisely used surround channels, I really felt sucked in. Whether it was a dynamic sandstorm that filled the room or the rumble of a train, this track is an audio spectacle that is not to be missed. Dialogue was always intelligible and level appropriate, even during blistering winds and snow-storms. Crackles from a campfire to dehydrated slurping of water found in the desert sounded like you could reach out and feel them. The score was a perfect compliment to it all, adding dimension to the sound design as well as the story. This is highly recommended!

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post #2 of 27 Old 05-02-2011, 01:01 PM
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Haven't seen the whole movie myself but from watching the trailer and bits and pieces i can tell this is a great and inspirational story. Can't even fatom that 4,500 mile journey and even through unknow landscapes. Good pick Lee!

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post #3 of 27 Old 05-02-2011, 01:15 PM
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There was enough story here for a mini-series or more, and I felt the movie tended to leave out large chunks. It's also notable that the film got very little distribution in the USA. I agree though that the scenery alone is worth the watch.
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post #4 of 27 Old 05-02-2011, 02:44 PM
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Greetings,

I definitely want to check this one out. Thanks Lee..

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post #5 of 27 Old 05-02-2011, 02:53 PM
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Lee - Thanks!
This one's on my list

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post #6 of 27 Old 05-02-2011, 04:43 PM
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I saw this last night, and agree for the most part with Lee's review! It is 1 of the most amazing stories I've ever heard of. There were some slow parts in the movie but none the less, quite impressive! The actors in this really looked like they lost a TON of weight. Especially the chick and Ed Harris.

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post #7 of 27 Old 05-02-2011, 08:31 PM
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I saw this in the theaters, and it's a terrific movie. Great cast from top to bottom, and some really impressive scenery. Although, it's a dark drama at times, it does offer some very uplifting moments of trimuph. Definitely a must see.
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post #8 of 27 Old 05-02-2011, 09:59 PM
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Great Blu-Ray! Does justice to the photography, which is in the realm of "Lawrence of Arabia" and "Master and Commander." No fooling. The cast is perfect. Colin Farrell plays a Russian as well as he played his Black Irish self in "In Bruges" and "Ondine." Buy this if you love what Blu-Rays do for movies.
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post #9 of 27 Old 05-03-2011, 08:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by capnvid View Post

great blu-ray! Does justice to the photography, which is in the realm of "lawrence of arabia" and "master and commander." no fooling. The cast is perfect. Colin farrell plays a russian as well as he played his black irish self in "in bruges" and "ondine." buy this if you love what blu-rays do for movies.

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post #10 of 27 Old 05-03-2011, 10:29 AM
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I watched this a couple of weeks ago and enjoyed the BR presentation and the movie too. I thought it slowed a little in some spots but not enough to distract from the essence of the movie. What made it for me was 1) It was based on a true story, 2)Colin Farrells' performance and 3)The stray's treatment (not to give anything away). An enjoyable movie to be sure .
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post #11 of 27 Old 05-03-2011, 03:02 PM
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Got the rental in the mail yesterday. I can't wait to pop this one in after reading the review!
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post #12 of 27 Old 05-03-2011, 06:19 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DJ Matt View Post

Got the rental in the mail yesterday. I can't wait to pop this one in after reading the review!

Let us know what you think!
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post #13 of 27 Old 05-04-2011, 04:14 PM
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I watched this last night and was very impressed. This one slid under everyone's radar. I thought the movie like you said Lee, is a solid 4/5. The video presentation was nice and filmic. I thought the video quality was excellent with shadow detail being quite good. The forest, desert and mountain scenes were handled extremely well throughout the video presentation. The audio presentation was excellent too. Anything from the chopping of the wood, to the snow and wind storms was a delight. The surround channels were used very effectively and was surprised by how well the audio was for this film.
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post #14 of 27 Old 05-05-2011, 04:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ralph Potts View Post

Greetings,

I definitely want to check this one out. Thanks Lee..

Regards,

Same I've never heard of it before until I read this thread.

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post #15 of 27 Old 05-05-2011, 04:49 AM
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Just noticed it's not available here in Australia unless it's under another title.

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post #16 of 27 Old 05-05-2011, 09:18 PM
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I haven't seen the movie, but the book is one of the best I've ever read. It's titled "the Long Walk" by the way.
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post #17 of 27 Old 05-07-2011, 06:53 AM
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Nice review Lee, you got me to rent it and watch it last night. The picture and sound were excellent. I was quite taken with the story of their survival and looked up the movie on Wikipedia as I am prone to do especially with films supposedly based on a true story. Unfortunately what I read moved the movie down a few notches on my enjoyment scale, although the essence of the film, the quest for freedom remains intact.

Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
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Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
The film is loosely based on The Long Walk, a book by Sławomir Rawicz, depicting his alleged escape from a Siberian gulag and subsequent 4,000-mile walk to freedom in India. Very popular, it sold over 500,000 copies and is credited with inspiring many explorers. In 2006, the book was effectively debunked. The BBC unearthed records (including some written by Rawicz himself) that showed that, rather than having escaped from the Gulag, in fact in 1942, he had been released by the USSR. In May 2009, Witold Gliński, a Polish WWII veteran living in the United Kingdom, came forward to claim that Rawicz's story was true but was actually an account of what happened to him, not Rawicz. Glinski's claims also have been seriously questioned. In addition, in 1942, a group of Siberian Gulag escapees is said to have hiked into India. However this too is suspect. Though the director Peter Weir continues to claim that the so-called long walk happened, he himself now describes The Way Back as "essentially a fictional film."

Regardless of whether this particular 'long walk' really took place, during World War II other Poles undertook difficult journeys attempting to leave the Soviet Union. Accounts of their escapes can be found in the archives of the Polish Institute and Sikorski Museum in London, England, and in the Hoover Institute, Stanford University, in California. Also several relatively verifiable and believable escapee autobiographies have been published in English, e.g., Michael Krupa's Shallow Graves in Siberia.

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post #18 of 27 Old 05-07-2011, 04:02 PM
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i felt really bad for the young girl as they walked the dessert.

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post #19 of 27 Old 05-08-2011, 12:03 PM
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Thanks for your review Lee. Compared to my viewing, yours is spot on. For, what at times can be a somewhat dark movie, it is definitely one of my favourite blu rays. In my opinion it should have won more recognition. The picture quality is superb, crisp and detailed and I especially found the audio quality as striking and pretty intense. The surround sound really got a good work out with this BD.
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post #20 of 27 Old 05-09-2011, 07:58 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bryan withaY View Post

Thanks for your review Lee. Compared to my viewing, yours is spot on. For, what at times can be a somewhat dark movie, it is definitely one of my favourite blu rays. In my opinion it should have won more recognition. The picture quality is superb, crisp and detailed and I especially found the audio quality as striking and pretty intense. The surround sound really got a good work out with this BD.

You are very welcome--thanks!
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post #21 of 27 Old 06-14-2011, 07:51 AM
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Greetings,

I watched this last night. We thoroughly enjoyed the elements of the story and the performances by the cast as an ensemble. The presentation was quite good as well. Thanks Lee.


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post #22 of 27 Old 07-06-2011, 12:28 AM
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My copy has finally arrived so will be watching this one tonight instead.

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post #23 of 27 Old 07-06-2011, 10:36 AM
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This film was great im glad i bought this. Its amazing what they had to go through. Thank you for the recommendation im glad i bought this on a blind buy.

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post #24 of 27 Old 08-26-2011, 12:49 PM
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This film was great im glad i bought this. Its amazing what they had to go through. Thank you for the recommendation im glad i bought this on a blind buy.

I have been way behind the curve on The Way Back BD but am finally going to get to watch it tonight. I will report my impressions later. Based on Lee's assessment, though, I suspect that I will like it.
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post #25 of 27 Old 08-26-2011, 06:43 PM
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Watched The Way Back earlier this evening and while I share Lee's enthusiasm for its brilliant cinematography and great sound, both demonstration quality it seems to me, I am less enthusiastic about the drama presented. I thought it moved a bit slowly at times but was saved from being mired by uniformly excellent performances from its talented ensemble cast. I give The Way Back 7 Stars out of 10 and highly recommend it because of its lush beauty, both visual and sonic.
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post #26 of 27 Old 03-03-2012, 12:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by strikehold View Post

I haven't seen the movie, but the book is one of the best I've ever read. It's titled "the Long Walk" by the way.

I just finished watching the film on Netflix streaming, did not know that they had made a film of one of my favorite books of all time. I'm even happier to know it's on BD, now I'm going to go find a copy to buy. Sorry to resurrect an old thread...but I think this film is worth it.

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post #27 of 27 Old 11-28-2012, 01:17 AM
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One of the best books I've ever read. I am hesitant to watch the movie in case it wanders from the original book "The Long Walk." But from your review and everyone's posts here, I might have to give it a look as it seems to have been done well.
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