Her son dying of cancer and her marriage falling apart, Julie flees to Poland in search of a man who can heal using his hands. Julie finds not only a magical cure for her son, but also ... See full summary »
Her son dying of cancer and her marriage falling apart, Julie flees to Poland in search of a man who can heal using his hands. Julie finds not only a magical cure for her son, but also comes across a love so pure it begins to heal the aching in her heart. Written by
Director Agnieszka Holland is an intelligent art house filmmaker who makes interesting, layered movies like Europa, Europa, for people who like to exercise their minds at the cinema. With her newest film, the Canadian / German / Polish co-production Julie Walking Home, she may have outsmarted herself. There are simply too many ideas and dangling story lines thrown into the mix. Julie, nicely played by Miranda Otto, comes to a cross roads in her life when she discovers her husband with another woman. Then her cute son is diagnosed with cancer which can't be treated because he is allergic to the chemotherapy drugs. Pretty depressing stuff, but it gets worse. As her personal troubles mount she does what any caring mother would do to save her child - she runs to Poland and finds a faith healer. The charismatic Alexei (played by Canadian Lothaire Bluteau in a riff on his Jesus of Montreal role) lays his hands on the boy and in the process also wins Julie's heart and follows her back to Canada. IN the third act story threads are left to sway aimlessly in the wind, while the tone of the film grows bleaker and bleaker. Holland frequently examines issues of faith in her work, and had she stuck to just the faith healer's plot line this could have been a great film. Bluteau is terrific and could have easily carried the emotional weight of the story. As it is we are left with unanswered questions about where this film stands on almost every topic it tackles from faith to medicine to ethics.
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