A WALK IN THE WOODS – review

A WALK IN THE WOODS – Rated R

Director and fellow Belleville native Ken Kwapis, brings to the BIG SCREEN a tale of two old friends…living out their LAST HORRAH by taking on the task of hiking the Appalachian Trail from start to finish ~ as we venture to take A WALK IN THE WOODS!!!

Having returned from spending 20+ years across the pond in England, Writer Bill Bryson (Robert Redford) is searching for a way to reconnect with “his homeland”, while also trying to come to grips with his own mortality, as we are all not getting any younger, you know!  So Bill comes up with the profound & glorious idea to take on the trekking the entire Appalachian Trail – ALONE!walk1

Distressed over the fact that her husband barely walks around the block, and now he has hatched the ingenious plan to hike over 2,000 miles, Bill’s wife Catherine (Emma Thompson) thinks exactly what we all do…. that he has gone stark raving mad!!!

Unable to talk him out of this grandiose idea, Catherine puts her foot down, insisting that if he must go, he cannot go all by himself… walk3

Bill starts to reach out to many of his friends and acquaintances to invite them to join him on his QUEST FOR FUN~ but he soon finds that they too, think he has lost his mind!

That is, until one of Bill’s long lost friends named Stephen Katz (Nick Nolte) catches wind of his plan, and decides it’s time to for them to reconnect.  As our inexperienced trekkers take on the wilderness ~ and each other’s issues ~ they become even more determined to rekindle their friendship, and to show everyone that this idea of Bill’s might not have been SO CRAZY after all…walk4

I give A WALK IN THE WOODS a rating of:  WAIT & CATCH THIS ONE ON NETFLIX or PAY PER VIEW…I was really excited to see REDFORD & NOLTE together in this film, and was hoping that between their “friendly chemistry” together and the beautiful landscape of the Appalachians, this would end up being a classic film, that I could send everyone to the theater to see.  But, sadly, once again Redford is erasing all of the fond memories I have of seeing him in such fantastic films as BUTCH CASSIDY AND THE SUNDANCE KID, THE WAY WE WERE, THE NATURAL, or even his part in CAPTAIN AMERICA ~ WINTER SOLDIER, with taking on roles that are mundane and mediocre AT BEST…anyone remember ALL IS LOST?  I thought not.  In all fairness, there were a few funny scenes that took place ~ I did chuckle a few times, and I was happy to see Nolte back on screen again too ~ but the chemistry between Redford and Thompson was absolutely non-existent, and even the periodic scenic view couldn’t stop me from giving this film such an unremarkable rating.  Suffice to say, A WALK IN THE WOODS wasn’t the worst film I have viewed all year…but it wasn’t, by far, THE BEST either…

Kathy Kaiser

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