The Walk movie review – high wire action at the Twin Towers is awesome

Leigh Turner
Leigh Turner

The Walk movie review: this will irritate some, but the scenes imagining a man on a tightrope between the twin towers are magnificent.

I often enjoy most the movies I didn’t intend to see.  I went to see “Mr Holmes” but it had finished.  So I ended up watching “The Walk” instead.

Some irritating elements

The film has irritating elements.  The magical realism style feels laboured, with the protagonist, French high-wire walker Philippe Petit, narrating his tale from the torch atop the Statue of Liberty.  The whimsical Amelie flavour won’t suit everyone; the cute early courting scenes between Petit and love interest Annie may set some teeth on edge.

Breathtaking action sequences

When we get to New York and the practical business of how Petit set about stringing a wire between the Twin Towers (still under construction) and doing his walk, the film becomes in turns engrossing and, I found, thrilling.  The 3D helps, rather than hinders.  And both the final resolution of the affair with Annie and Petit’s reference to his complimentary ticket to visit the viewing platform of the Twin Towers “for ever” offer chill drafts of realism.

For: an entertaining and technically impressive rendering of a real-world adventure with decent narrative drive.  The final high-wire scenes above New York are vertigo-inducing.

Against: overly cute in parts.  Some lazily-sketched minor characters.  And you’re left wanting to find out more about Petit, and to watch the widely-held-to-be-a-masterpiece documentary of the same event, Man on Wire.  In fact, I may have to buy the DVD.

P.S. For more movie and music reviews, see my movies and music archives.

Share:

Sign up for my update emails

…and receive a FREE short story!

I won’t pass on your details to third parties / unsubscribe whenever you wish

One Response

  1. By coincidence I had indeed watched the 2008 documentary Man on Wire just days before reading this. A riveting account of an individual’s compulsion to do something extraordinary and beautiful just for the hell of it. The documentary seems to avoid the drawbacks of the new feature film (which I have not yet seen). Thoroughly recommended.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Articles

Travis McGee
Reviews

Travis McGee, loner prototype

Travis McGee, the creation of US author John D MacDonald, is a superb prototype of a loner hero. Lee Child cites him as an inspiration for his solo tough guy, Jack Reacher.

Read More
Phineas Finn
Reviews

Phineas Finn: The Irish Member

You have to worship an author who wrote: ‘It has been the great fault of our politicians that they have all wanted to do something.’

Read More
The Tunnel Under the World
Reviews

The Tunnel Under the World

The Tunnel Under the World begins with the words: “On the morning of June 15th, Guy Burckhardt woke up screaming out of a dream.”

Read More
Pip, Estella and Miss Haversham in "Great Expectations" by Dickens
Reviews

Great Expectations

“Great Expectations” is a stand-out Dickens: rich in wisdom, love and astonishing set pieces. It’s also full of great quotations – see here.

Read More
Can You Forgive Her
Reviews

Can You Forgive Her?

Can You Forgive Her? by Anthony Trollope oozes sex and politics. It’s funny, moving and enlightening. Read it.

Read More
Mitch Rapp Protect and Defend
Reviews

Mitch Rapp – Action Hero

Searching for a satisfying action hero? Look no further! Vince Flynn’s Mitch Rapp is an no-nonsense counter-terrorism special ops assassin.

Read More