Rebecca Jones, the arts correspondent at BBC4, talked to Joe Penhall, who adapted The Road for the big screen, and played a portion of the score Nick Cave wrote for the film.
Cave previously worked with director John Hillcoat on The Proposition, the Australian western starring Guy Pearce and Ray Winstone, for which he wrote the script as well as the score.
Also included in Jones’ report are a few audio clips from Irish writer John Banville, who won the MAN Booker Prize in 2005 for his novel The Sea and is a fan of the book, and from Cormac McCarthy himself.
You can hear it here.
The Road was screened in NYC the other day. AICN has the first shamelessly gushing review.
John Hillcoat has taken this dark and brooding story and turned it into something so cinematic yet still maintaining an absolutely faithful adaptation. I had read in an interview with him a while back where he said he was planning on adding a bit more color to this movie because an audience ‘doesn’t want to look at grey for 2 hours.’ Well if he did he made it very very subtle because the color scheme works entirely. It’s still very grey and still very dark. The scope of this movie is unbelievable with vast and detailed landscapes representing a dead world. These shots are accompanied by voiceovers spoken by The Man from passages taken directly from the book. As far as the visual aspects go and how much we are allowed to see of this world is niether overdone or underdone. It’s not JUST a forest and it’s not The Day After Tomorrow. The artistic direction really substitutes for the writing in the book and helped to give me the same feeling I got when I read it. A perfect balance.
So we have these seven performances that make up this movie.
Robert Duvall, Guy Pearce, Garret Dillahunt and Michael K. Williams all have one scene each of very important characters, all of which give us a very good portrait of every aspect of this society. I could go off on each of them and how they gave each role so much and why it worked so well with the world of the movie but this review would be far too long. They’re all just great.
Garret was promoting The Sarah Connor Chronicles at Fox’s midseason press junket. The first report is mainly about The Road. It’s up at SCI FI Wire.
“I play the Gang Member, and they meet up with a pretty nasty road gang toward the beginning, in the first quarter,” Dillahunt said in an interview on Tuesday in Los Angeles, where he was promoting Fox’s Sarah Connor Chronicles. “Yeah, in the truck. And me and Viggo have a great scene in the woods where I try to take his son. The big fight in the woods.”
Dillahunt said the film shot in winter in rural Pennsylvania, a bleak setting that mirrored the book’s grim landscape, which Dillahunt described as “beautiful in its spareness.”
“We shot in just horrific places, you know,” Dillahunt said. “We found this incredible stretch of road that hadn’t been used since 1964, outside of Pittsburgh, these incredible tunnels and everything, really spooky, and the trees are bare, freezing cold. And I think they assembled a group of people that’s very interested in preserving the book.” The movie is directed by John Hillcoat and written by Joe Penhall.
Dillahunt—who, unlike many of his characters, is the nicest guy possible—says the role made him wonder how he’d react in similar circumstances. “I like to think I’d be like Viggo’s character or Guy Pearce’s character, you know? I’d like to think that that’s how I’d respond to that crisis. But if I’m starving, I wonder what I would do. I’m pretty certain that it wouldn’t be cannibalism.”
Still, Dillahunt said that he had to get into the mindset of a cannibalistic marauder. “I had more sympathy for the guy when I tried to think of it in those terms,” he said, but added with a smile: “That might have been… too kind.”