The Walk

An earnest, thrillingly immersive experience!


The Walk

  • An earnest, thrillingly immersive experience!

The Walk

  • An earnest, thrillingly immersive experience!


Rated

PG

Starring

Joseph Gordon-Levitt
Charlotte Le Bon
Ben Kingsley
James Badge Dale
Ben Schwartz

Written by

Robert Zemeckis
Christopher Browne
Philippe Petit

Directed by

Robert Zemeckis



What to Expect

Well, it’s a Robert Zemeckis live-action drama. Made specifically for the IMAX experience. The expectations are justifiably high.

And although I can still never forgive him for producing Mars Needs Moms, we all have to agree that Zemeckis, whose last intense Flight was possibly one of the best movies of 2012, is a much needed enthusiast in Hollywood when it comes to a perfected visual frame. The technologically ever-curious director has always wanted to up the ante on filmmaking, whether it’s through motion capture animation or just some perfectly composited visual effects in a frame. And the fact that I was getting to watch The Walk with the IMAX 3D experience should have most definitely excited me.

Of course, I’ve been kinda rubbed off the wrong way with the amount of gimmicky films I’ve seen using the experience (more on that later), but the trailer gave me hope. It gave me enough hope to want to watch the movie; if only out of curiosity than anything else.

What’s it About?

The Walk is about Philippe Petit’s journey to becoming the most famous wire-walker known to man when he decides to walk one a wire tied between the top of the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York.

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Annie (Charlotte Le Bon) and Philippe Petit (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) in TriStar Pictures' THE WALK.

The Storyboard

Of possibly the vast number of films having been released in the combined immersive technological formats of IMAX and 3D, the only film that managed to make its cut, having possibly used both the formats to their best possible standards combined, would have to be Avatar. And while there have definitely been a ton of films to have released with the collaborative technical formats, none of them managed to impress me the way Cameron’s visual blockbuster did.

(It is, of course, a different story altogether that my views on the film alone, apart from its exceptional technical wizardry, changed a lot. And Cameron probably wouldn’t be happy hearing my reformed POV, considering he’s been neck-deep in obsessively building the film into a franchise.)

The films that came close to being this hauntingly immersive have zeroed in to my earliest jab at the IMAX screens with Inception, and the respectably made 3D thrill-ride (that may also double up as a guilty-pleasure movie) that was Tron: Legacy. Many of the films that hit the screens bringing with them the tagline of a movie specialized for either 3D viewing, or the IMAX screen, or both, have been reduced to profitable gimmicks that don’t do anything more than ask the audience to shell out their monies. None of the filmmakers have been able to give me something as hair-raising as the above stated big screen experiences I decisively made myself a part of. And I really thought that Zemeckis’ current film, enjoyable as it would be, would be bracketed within the simple stratosphere of a business idea.

Boy, was I wrong.

What I managed to ignore (and oft deliberately) was that Zemeckis loves to experiment with the many forms of moving visual art that he can lay his hands on. His successful stint with motion capture animation, for example, in the form of The Polar Express, and later Disney’s adaptation of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, proves how much of a technical enthusiast he is when it comes to feature films. It should have been no surprise thus, that when a film like The Walk would go for the IMAX screens, doubling as a 3D viewing experience, there was going to be fun to be had.

Of course, we don’t know that when we’re introduced to our earnestly positive, ever happy protagonist Philippe Petit, and also Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s Parisian accent, both of which will cause a considerable degree of annoyance to its viewers. Fifteen minutes in, however, and you’ll be caught unawares at just how much you appreciate the very nature of this film, ever brimming with just the kind of infectious positivity that cinema-goers need every once in a while. Zemeckis creates humor, romance and a certain sense of direction through his protagonist. The people might not always speak French the way they should for authenticity, but here’s the thing: there’s a cheekily justified reason Petit doesn’t speak French in the film; even implores his acquaintances to speak English with him.

Philippe Petit (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) and Annie (Charolette Le Bon) in TriStar Pictures' THE WALK.

The Rehearsal

For all of Charlotte Le Bon’s presence, there’s unfortunately not much for her to do. We’ve got to give credit to Zemeckis for whipping up an extremely compatible couple that Gordon-Levitt and Le Bon become through the film’s runtime. Their chemistry is just the right dose of fluffy and extremely memorable. Through the scenes she does play a part in, we’re shown that she’s a pillar that consistently pushes him to be the good man that he already is at times when he doesn’t want to be. At times she earnestly believes in him, and at times, she’s seen being tired of his dangerously obsessive nature, almost threatening to wreck her emotional sanity. The latter is shown pre-climax, when their argument reaches an intensity which she shrugs off when she’s tired of him.

But the real big-ticket that’s worth your money’s worth is definitely the last half-an-hour to a quarter of an hour, which is exactly what makes the title relevant enough for the film. The efforts taken by Petit’s crew (one that Zemeckis builds up through his supporting characters) almost suddenly make sense, and the eponymous deed that closes makes it all the more worth it. The IMAX 3D experience is worth it; such is the level of immersion when Gordon-Levitt does the walk that the people who have a fear of heights can feel the urgency. Dariusz Wolski’s (Prometheus) spectacular cinematography allows the visual effects team enough leeway to beautifully composite a landscape through its consistent production design that’s as hauntingly beautiful as it is dangerously urgent.

Visual effects supervisor Kevin Baillie, who’s been a regular contributor on Zemeckis’ films obviously knows his pulse, but the real deal here is that he’s managed to handle a huge bunch of brilliant CGI artists, editors and the likes to collaborate together and do an excellent job recreating the twin towers and giving it the requisite realism it deserves. For all of those who find practical effects to be the only way a film can roll in authenticity, let’s take a moment to put rare films like these in which these artists put their heart and soul to bring every frame of the climactic thrill to life. Alan Silvestri’s music is fantastic, and the whelming usage of piano touches the right chords within the heartstrings of the audience to pull them in. The movie’s laced with a fantastic sound design that allows the audience to completely envelope themselves in the film’s environment. I am pleased to state that Jeremiah O’Driscoll edits the film with the delicate warmth, giving every shot its breathing space, and the audience their chance to sink it in.

To Perform or Not to Perform

The Real Deal

The Real Deal

Joseph Gordon-Levitt walks a very fine line between stereotyping and over-doing, and somehow comes out a winner, charming the audience with his confidence through and through. As mentioned earlier, Le Bon is an equally confident presence, and her on-screen chemistry with Gordon-Levitt is effortless and – ultimately – very pleasing. Ben Kingsley is yet another fun actor to watch, and excels in a few relatively silent, emotively strong scenes, even if he goes off-kilter on his accent sometimes. James Badge Dale is excellent ad the French-speaking New Yorker. He has the that effortless charm and definitely looks like he knows what he’s doing. Steve Valentine doesn’t have much to do, but let’s just give him brownie points on rocking that ‘stache like it’s nobody’s business. César Domboy gives a calculated performance as Jeff. He’s the one the people who are incredibly scared of heights can completely relate to, and he’s an important piece of the puzzle too. Ben Schwartz is a fun supporting presence as Albert, the budding photographer. The others are great.

Worth it?

As earnestly infectious as the beginning is as it is a profoundly hair-raising experience by the end of it, The Walk makes for an extremely wholesome blend of drama and high-stakes adventure. The movie cannot be missed, and is most definitely your money’s worth in IMAX 3D if you’re looking for complete and utter immersiveness. Zemeckis proves his stronghold over the technical aspects of live-action filmmaking once again with this film, where he truly manages to give the audience a sense of nauseous vertigo, allowing them to feel how high up it is, and what the stakes of his protagonist truly are if he fails.

This one is comes highly recommended for a movie-watching experience, primarily – and at the risk of repeating myself – on IMAX 3D

PS: If you’re riddled with the fear of heights, you may probably want to tread with caution. No, really.

Consensus: 4 Stars
Impressive!
About the Author

Ankit Ojha

Facebook

Ambivert. Intermittent cynic. Content creator. New media enthusiast. Binge-watcher. Budding filmmaker.

Watch the trailer

We’re viral

Like UsFollow Us


Rated

PG

Starring

Joseph Gordon-Levitt
Charlotte Le Bon
Ben Kingsley
James Badge Dale
Ben Schwartz

Written by

Robert Zemeckis
Christopher Browne
Philippe Petit

Directed by

Robert Zemeckis



What to Expect

Well, it’s a Robert Zemeckis live-action drama. Made specifically for the IMAX experience. The expectations are justifiably high.

And although I can still never forgive him for producing Mars Needs Moms, we all have to agree that Zemeckis, whose last intense Flight was possibly one of the best movies of 2012, is a much needed enthusiast in Hollywood when it comes to a perfected visual frame. The technologically ever-curious director has always wanted to up the ante on filmmaking, whether it’s through motion capture animation or just some perfectly composited visual effects in a frame. And the fact that I was getting to watch The Walk with the IMAX 3D experience should have most definitely excited me.

Of course, I’ve been kinda rubbed off the wrong way with the amount of gimmicky films I’ve seen using the experience (more on that later), but the trailer gave me hope. It gave me enough hope to want to watch the movie; if only out of curiosity than anything else.

What’s it About?

The Walk is about Philippe Petit’s journey to becoming the most famous wire-walker known to man when he decides to walk one a wire tied between the top of the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York.

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Annie (Charlotte Le Bon) and Philippe Petit (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) in TriStar Pictures' THE WALK.

The Storyboard

Of possibly the vast number of films having been released in the combined immersive technological formats of IMAX and 3D, the only film that managed to make its cut, having possibly used both the formats to their best possible standards combined, would have to be Avatar. And while there have definitely been a ton of films to have released with the collaborative technical formats, none of them managed to impress me the way Cameron’s visual blockbuster did.

(It is, of course, a different story altogether that my views on the film alone, apart from its exceptional technical wizardry, changed a lot. And Cameron probably wouldn’t be happy hearing my reformed POV, considering he’s been neck-deep in obsessively building the film into a franchise.)

The films that came close to being this hauntingly immersive have zeroed in to my earliest jab at the IMAX screens with Inception, and the respectably made 3D thrill-ride (that may also double up as a guilty-pleasure movie) that was Tron: Legacy. Many of the films that hit the screens bringing with them the tagline of a movie specialized for either 3D viewing, or the IMAX screen, or both, have been reduced to profitable gimmicks that don’t do anything more than ask the audience to shell out their monies. None of the filmmakers have been able to give me something as hair-raising as the above stated big screen experiences I decisively made myself a part of. And I really thought that Zemeckis’ current film, enjoyable as it would be, would be bracketed within the simple stratosphere of a business idea.

Boy, was I wrong.

What I managed to ignore (and oft deliberately) was that Zemeckis loves to experiment with the many forms of moving visual art that he can lay his hands on. His successful stint with motion capture animation, for example, in the form of The Polar Express, and later Disney’s adaptation of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, proves how much of a technical enthusiast he is when it comes to feature films. It should have been no surprise thus, that when a film like The Walk would go for the IMAX screens, doubling as a 3D viewing experience, there was going to be fun to be had.

Of course, we don’t know that when we’re introduced to our earnestly positive, ever happy protagonist Philippe Petit, and also Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s Parisian accent, both of which will cause a considerable degree of annoyance to its viewers. Fifteen minutes in, however, and you’ll be caught unawares at just how much you appreciate the very nature of this film, ever brimming with just the kind of infectious positivity that cinema-goers need every once in a while. Zemeckis creates humor, romance and a certain sense of direction through his protagonist. The people might not always speak French the way they should for authenticity, but here’s the thing: there’s a cheekily justified reason Petit doesn’t speak French in the film; even implores his acquaintances to speak English with him.

Philippe Petit (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) and Annie (Charolette Le Bon) in TriStar Pictures' THE WALK.

The Rehearsal

For all of Charlotte Le Bon’s presence, there’s unfortunately not much for her to do. We’ve got to give credit to Zemeckis for whipping up an extremely compatible couple that Gordon-Levitt and Le Bon become through the film’s runtime. Their chemistry is just the right dose of fluffy and extremely memorable. Through the scenes she does play a part in, we’re shown that she’s a pillar that consistently pushes him to be the good man that he already is at times when he doesn’t want to be. At times she earnestly believes in him, and at times, she’s seen being tired of his dangerously obsessive nature, almost threatening to wreck her emotional sanity. The latter is shown pre-climax, when their argument reaches an intensity which she shrugs off when she’s tired of him.

But the real big-ticket that’s worth your money’s worth is definitely the last half-an-hour to a quarter of an hour, which is exactly what makes the title relevant enough for the film. The efforts taken by Petit’s crew (one that Zemeckis builds up through his supporting characters) almost suddenly make sense, and the eponymous deed that closes makes it all the more worth it. The IMAX 3D experience is worth it; such is the level of immersion when Gordon-Levitt does the walk that the people who have a fear of heights can feel the urgency. Dariusz Wolski’s (Prometheus) spectacular cinematography allows the visual effects team enough leeway to beautifully composite a landscape through its consistent production design that’s as hauntingly beautiful as it is dangerously urgent.

Visual effects supervisor Kevin Baillie, who’s been a regular contributor on Zemeckis’ films obviously knows his pulse, but the real deal here is that he’s managed to handle a huge bunch of brilliant CGI artists, editors and the likes to collaborate together and do an excellent job recreating the twin towers and giving it the requisite realism it deserves. For all of those who find practical effects to be the only way a film can roll in authenticity, let’s take a moment to put rare films like these in which these artists put their heart and soul to bring every frame of the climactic thrill to life. Alan Silvestri’s music is fantastic, and the whelming usage of piano touches the right chords within the heartstrings of the audience to pull them in. The movie’s laced with a fantastic sound design that allows the audience to completely envelope themselves in the film’s environment. I am pleased to state that Jeremiah O’Driscoll edits the film with the delicate warmth, giving every shot its breathing space, and the audience their chance to sink it in.

To Perform or Not to Perform

The Real Deal

The Real Deal

Joseph Gordon-Levitt walks a very fine line between stereotyping and over-doing, and somehow comes out a winner, charming the audience with his confidence through and through. As mentioned earlier, Le Bon is an equally confident presence, and her on-screen chemistry with Gordon-Levitt is effortless and – ultimately – very pleasing. Ben Kingsley is yet another fun actor to watch, and excels in a few relatively silent, emotively strong scenes, even if he goes off-kilter on his accent sometimes. James Badge Dale is excellent ad the French-speaking New Yorker. He has the that effortless charm and definitely looks like he knows what he’s doing. Steve Valentine doesn’t have much to do, but let’s just give him brownie points on rocking that ‘stache like it’s nobody’s business. César Domboy gives a calculated performance as Jeff. He’s the one the people who are incredibly scared of heights can completely relate to, and he’s an important piece of the puzzle too. Ben Schwartz is a fun supporting presence as Albert, the budding photographer. The others are great.

Worth it?

As earnestly infectious as the beginning is as it is a profoundly hair-raising experience by the end of it, The Walk makes for an extremely wholesome blend of drama and high-stakes adventure. The movie cannot be missed, and is most definitely your money’s worth in IMAX 3D if you’re looking for complete and utter immersiveness. Zemeckis proves his stronghold over the technical aspects of live-action filmmaking once again with this film, where he truly manages to give the audience a sense of nauseous vertigo, allowing them to feel how high up it is, and what the stakes of his protagonist truly are if he fails.

This one is comes highly recommended for a movie-watching experience, primarily – and at the risk of repeating myself – on IMAX 3D

PS: If you’re riddled with the fear of heights, you may probably want to tread with caution. No, really.

Consensus: 4 Stars
Impressive!
About the Author

Ankit Ojha

Facebook

Ambivert. Intermittent cynic. Content creator. New media enthusiast. Binge-watcher. Budding filmmaker.

Watch the trailer

We’re viral

Like UsFollow Us

Cast Joseph Gordon-Levitt
Charlotte Le Bon
Ben Kingsley
Director Robert Zemeckis
Consensus: 4 Stars
Impressive!

What to Expect

Team on a high concrete roof

Team on a high concrete roof

Well, it’s a Robert Zemeckis live-action drama. Made specifically for the IMAX experience. The expectations are justifiably high.

And although I can still never forgive him for producing Mars Needs Moms, we all have to agree that Zemeckis, whose last intense Flight was possibly one of the best movies of 2012, is a much needed enthusiast in Hollywood when it comes to a perfected visual frame. The technologically ever-curious director has always wanted to up the ante on filmmaking, whether it’s through motion capture animation or just some perfectly composited visual effects in a frame. And the fact that I was getting to watch The Walk with the IMAX 3D experience should have most definitely excited me.

Of course, I’ve been kinda rubbed off the wrong way with the amount of gimmicky films I’ve seen using the experience (more on that later), but the trailer gave me hope. It gave me enough hope to want to watch the movie; if only out of curiosity than anything else.

What’s it About?

The Walk is about Philippe Petit’s journey to becoming the most famous wire-walker known to man when he decides to walk one a wire tied between the top of the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York.

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Annie (Charlotte Le Bon) and Philippe Petit (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) in TriStar Pictures' THE WALK.

The Storyboard

Of possibly the vast number of films having been released in the combined immersive technological formats of IMAX and 3D, the only film that managed to make its cut, having possibly used both the formats to their best possible standards combined, would have to be Avatar. And while there have definitely been a ton of films to have released with the collaborative technical formats, none of them managed to impress me the way Cameron’s visual blockbuster did.

(It is, of course, a different story altogether that my views on the film alone, apart from its exceptional technical wizardry, changed a lot. And Cameron probably wouldn’t be happy hearing my reformed POV, considering he’s been neck-deep in obsessively building the film into a franchise.)

The films that came close to being this hauntingly immersive have zeroed in to my earliest jab at the IMAX screens with Inception, and the respectably made 3D thrill-ride (that may also double up as a guilty-pleasure movie) that was Tron: Legacy. Many of the films that hit the screens bringing with them the tagline of a movie specialized for either 3D viewing, or the IMAX screen, or both, have been reduced to profitable gimmicks that don’t do anything more than ask the audience to shell out their monies. None of the filmmakers have been able to give me something as hair-raising as the above stated big screen experiences I decisively made myself a part of. And I really thought that Zemeckis’ current film, enjoyable as it would be, would be bracketed within the simple stratosphere of a business idea.

Boy, was I wrong.

What I managed to ignore (and oft deliberately) was that Zemeckis loves to experiment with the many forms of moving visual art that he can lay his hands on. His successful stint with motion capture animation, for example, in the form of The Polar Express, and later Disney’s adaptation of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, proves how much of a technical enthusiast he is when it comes to feature films. It should have been no surprise thus, that when a film like The Walk would go for the IMAX screens, doubling as a 3D viewing experience, there was going to be fun to be had.

Of course, we don’t know that when we’re introduced to our earnestly positive, ever happy protagonist Philippe Petit, and also Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s Parisian accent, both of which will cause a considerable degree of annoyance to its viewers. Fifteen minutes in, however, and you’ll be caught unawares at just how much you appreciate the very nature of this film, ever brimming with just the kind of infectious positivity that cinema-goers need every once in a while. Zemeckis creates humor, romance and a certain sense of direction through his protagonist. The people might not always speak French the way they should for authenticity, but here’s the thing: there’s a cheekily justified reason Petit doesn’t speak French in the film; even implores his acquaintances to speak English with him.

Philippe Petit (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) and Annie (Charolette Le Bon) in TriStar Pictures' THE WALK.

The Rehearsal

For all of Charlotte Le Bon’s presence, there’s unfortunately not much for her to do. We’ve got to give credit to Zemeckis for whipping up an extremely compatible couple that Gordon-Levitt and Le Bon become through the film’s runtime. Their chemistry is just the right dose of fluffy and extremely memorable. Through the scenes she does play a part in, we’re shown that she’s a pillar that consistently pushes him to be the good man that he already is at times when he doesn’t want to be. At times she earnestly believes in him, and at times, she’s seen being tired of his dangerously obsessive nature, almost threatening to wreck her emotional sanity. The latter is shown pre-climax, when their argument reaches an intensity which she shrugs off when she’s tired of him.

But the real big-ticket that’s worth your money’s worth is definitely the last half-an-hour to a quarter of an hour, which is exactly what makes the title relevant enough for the film. The efforts taken by Petit’s crew (one that Zemeckis builds up through his supporting characters) almost suddenly make sense, and the eponymous deed that closes makes it all the more worth it. The IMAX 3D experience is worth it; such is the level of immersion when Gordon-Levitt does the walk that the people who have a fear of heights can feel the urgency. Dariusz Wolski’s (Prometheus) spectacular cinematography allows the visual effects team enough leeway to beautifully composite a landscape through its consistent production design that’s as hauntingly beautiful as it is dangerously urgent.

Visual effects supervisor Kevin Baillie, who’s been a regular contributor on Zemeckis’ films obviously knows his pulse, but the real deal here is that he’s managed to handle a huge bunch of brilliant CGI artists, editors and the likes to collaborate together and do an excellent job recreating the twin towers and giving it the requisite realism it deserves. For all of those who find practical effects to be the only way a film can roll in authenticity, let’s take a moment to put rare films like these in which these artists put their heart and soul to bring every frame of the climactic thrill to life. Alan Silvestri’s music is fantastic, and the whelming usage of piano touches the right chords within the heartstrings of the audience to pull them in. The movie’s laced with a fantastic sound design that allows the audience to completely envelope themselves in the film’s environment. I am pleased to state that Jeremiah O’Driscoll edits the film with the delicate warmth, giving every shot its breathing space, and the audience their chance to sink it in.

To Perform or Not to Perform

The Real Deal

The Real Deal

Joseph Gordon-Levitt walks a very fine line between stereotyping and over-doing, and somehow comes out a winner, charming the audience with his confidence through and through. As mentioned earlier, Le Bon is an equally confident presence, and her on-screen chemistry with Gordon-Levitt is effortless and – ultimately – very pleasing. Ben Kingsley is yet another fun actor to watch, and excels in a few relatively silent, emotively strong scenes, even if he goes off-kilter on his accent sometimes. James Badge Dale is excellent ad the French-speaking New Yorker. He has the that effortless charm and definitely looks like he knows what he’s doing. Steve Valentine doesn’t have much to do, but let’s just give him brownie points on rocking that ‘stache like it’s nobody’s business. César Domboy gives a calculated performance as Jeff. He’s the one the people who are incredibly scared of heights can completely relate to, and he’s an important piece of the puzzle too. Ben Schwartz is a fun supporting presence as Albert, the budding photographer. The others are great.

Worth it?

As earnestly infectious as the beginning is as it is a profoundly hair-raising experience by the end of it, The Walk makes for an extremely wholesome blend of drama and high-stakes adventure. The movie cannot be missed, and is most definitely your money’s worth in IMAX 3D if you’re looking for complete and utter immersiveness. Zemeckis proves his stronghold over the technical aspects of live-action filmmaking once again with this film, where he truly manages to give the audience a sense of nauseous vertigo, allowing them to feel how high up it is, and what the stakes of his protagonist truly are if he fails.

This one is comes highly recommended for a movie-watching experience, primarily – and at the risk of repeating myself – on IMAX 3D

PS: If you’re riddled with the fear of heights, you may probably want to tread with caution. No, really.

About the Author

Ankit Ojha

Facebook

Ambivert. Intermittent cynic. Content creator. New media enthusiast. Binge-watcher. Budding filmmaker.

We’re viral

Like usFollow us
Cast Joseph Gordon-Levitt
Charlotte Le Bon
Ben Kingsley
Director Robert Zemeckis
Consensus: 4 Stars
Impressive!

What to Expect

Well, it’s a Robert Zemeckis live-action drama. Made specifically for the IMAX experience. The expectations are justifiably high.

And although I can still never forgive him for producing Mars Needs Moms, we all have to agree that Zemeckis, whose last intense Flight was possibly one of the best movies of 2012, is a much needed enthusiast in Hollywood when it comes to a perfected visual frame. The technologically ever-curious director has always wanted to up the ante on filmmaking, whether it’s through motion capture animation or just some perfectly composited visual effects in a frame. And the fact that I was getting to watch The Walk with the IMAX 3D experience should have most definitely excited me.

Of course, I’ve been kinda rubbed off the wrong way with the amount of gimmicky films I’ve seen using the experience (more on that later), but the trailer gave me hope. It gave me enough hope to want to watch the movie; if only out of curiosity than anything else.

What’s it About?

The Walk is about Philippe Petit’s journey to becoming the most famous wire-walker known to man when he decides to walk one a wire tied between the top of the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York.

Ready or not; here I come!

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Of possibly the vast number of films having been released in the combined immersive technological formats of IMAX and 3D, the only film that managed to make its cut, having possibly used both the formats to their best possible standards combined, would have to be Avatar. And while there have definitely been a ton of films to have released with the collaborative technical formats, none of them managed to impress me the way Cameron’s visual blockbuster did.

(It is, of course, a different story altogether that my views on the film alone, apart from its exceptional technical wizardry, changed a lot. And Cameron probably wouldn’t be happy hearing my reformed POV, considering he’s been neck-deep in obsessively building the film into a franchise.)

The films that came close to being this hauntingly immersive have zeroed in to my earliest jab at the IMAX screens with Inception, and the respectably made 3D thrill-ride (that may also double up as a guilty-pleasure movie) that was Tron: Legacy. Many of the films that hit the screens bringing with them the tagline of a movie specialized for either 3D viewing, or the IMAX screen, or both, have been reduced to profitable gimmicks that don’t do anything more than ask the audience to shell out their monies. None of the filmmakers have been able to give me something as hair-raising as the above stated big screen experiences I decisively made myself a part of. And I really thought that Zemeckis’ current film, enjoyable as it would be, would be bracketed within the simple stratosphere of a business idea.

Boy, was I wrong.

What I managed to ignore (and oft deliberately) was that Zemeckis loves to experiment with the many forms of moving visual art that he can lay his hands on. His successful stint with motion capture animation, for example, in the form of The Polar Express, and later Disney’s adaptation of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, proves how much of a technical enthusiast he is when it comes to feature films. It should have been no surprise thus, that when a film like The Walk would go for the IMAX screens, doubling as a 3D viewing experience, there was going to be fun to be had.

Of course, we don’t know that when we’re introduced to our earnestly positive, ever happy protagonist Philippe Petit, and also Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s Parisian accent, both of which will cause a considerable degree of annoyance to its viewers. Fifteen minutes in, however, and you’ll be caught unawares at just how much you appreciate the very nature of this film, ever brimming with just the kind of infectious positivity that cinema-goers need every once in a while. Zemeckis creates humor, romance and a certain sense of direction through his protagonist. The people might not always speak French the way they should for authenticity, but here’s the thing: there’s a cheekily justified reason Petit doesn’t speak French in the film; even implores his acquaintances to speak English with him.

The Rehearsal

For all of Charlotte Le Bon’s presence, there’s unfortunately not much for her to do. We’ve got to give credit to Zemeckis for whipping up an extremely compatible couple that Gordon-Levitt and Le Bon become through the film’s runtime. Their chemistry is just the right dose of fluffy and extremely memorable. Through the scenes she does play a part in, we’re shown that she’s a pillar that consistently pushes him to be the good man that he already is at times when he doesn’t want to be. At times she earnestly believes in him, and at times, she’s seen being tired of his dangerously obsessive nature, almost threatening to wreck her emotional sanity. The latter is shown pre-climax, when their argument reaches an intensity which she shrugs off when she’s tired of him.

But the real big-ticket that’s worth your money’s worth is definitely the last half-an-hour to a quarter of an hour, which is exactly what makes the title relevant enough for the film. The efforts taken by Petit’s crew (one that Zemeckis builds up through his supporting characters) almost suddenly make sense, and the eponymous deed that closes makes it all the more worth it. The IMAX 3D experience is worth it; such is the level of immersion when Gordon-Levitt does the walk that the people who have a fear of heights can feel the urgency. Dariusz Wolski’s (Prometheus) spectacular cinematography allows the visual effects team enough leeway to beautifully composite a landscape through its consistent production design that’s as hauntingly beautiful as it is dangerously urgent.

Visual effects supervisor Kevin Baillie, who’s been a regular contributor on Zemeckis’ films obviously knows his pulse, but the real deal here is that he’s managed to handle a huge bunch of brilliant CGI artists, editors and the likes to collaborate together and do an excellent job recreating the twin towers and giving it the requisite realism it deserves. For all of those who find practical effects to be the only way a film can roll in authenticity, let’s take a moment to put rare films like these in which these artists put their heart and soul to bring every frame of the climactic thrill to life. Alan Silvestri’s music is fantastic, and the whelming usage of piano touches the right chords within the heartstrings of the audience to pull them in. The movie’s laced with a fantastic sound design that allows the audience to completely envelope themselves in the film’s environment. I am pleased to state that Jeremiah O’Driscoll edits the film with the delicate warmth, giving every shot its breathing space, and the audience their chance to sink it in.

The Real Deal

To Perform or Not to Perform

Joseph Gordon-Levitt walks a very fine line between stereotyping and over-doing, and somehow comes out a winner, charming the audience with his confidence through and through. As mentioned earlier, Le Bon is an equally confident presence, and her on-screen chemistry with Gordon-Levitt is effortless and – ultimately – very pleasing. Ben Kingsley is yet another fun actor to watch, and excels in a few relatively silent, emotively strong scenes, even if he goes off-kilter on his accent sometimes. James Badge Dale is excellent ad the French-speaking New Yorker. He has the that effortless charm and definitely looks like he knows what he’s doing. Steve Valentine doesn’t have much to do, but let’s just give him brownie points on rocking that ‘stache like it’s nobody’s business. César Domboy gives a calculated performance as Jeff. He’s the one the people who are incredibly scared of heights can completely relate to, and he’s an important piece of the puzzle too. Ben Schwartz is a fun supporting presence as Albert, the budding photographer. The others are great.

Worth it?

As earnestly infectious as the beginning is as it is a profoundly hair-raising experience by the end of it, The Walk makes for an extremely wholesome blend of drama and high-stakes adventure. The movie cannot be missed, and is most definitely your money’s worth in IMAX 3D if you’re looking for complete and utter immersiveness. Zemeckis proves his stronghold over the technical aspects of live-action filmmaking once again with this film, where he truly manages to give the audience a sense of nauseous vertigo, allowing them to feel how high up it is, and what the stakes of his protagonist truly are if he fails.

This one is comes highly recommended for a movie-watching experience, primarily – and at the risk of repeating myself – on IMAX 3D

PS: If you’re riddled with the fear of heights, you may probably want to tread with caution. No, really.

About the Author

Ankit Ojha

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Ambivert. Intermittent cynic. Content creator. New media enthusiast. Binge-watcher. Budding filmmaker.

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