The story of the life and career of the legendary rhythm and blues musician Ray Charles, from his humble beginnings in the South, where he went blind at age seven, to his meteoric rise to stardom during the 1950s and 1960s.
1921. An innocent immigrant woman is tricked into a life of burlesque and vaudeville until a dazzling magician tries to save her and reunite her with her sister who is being held in the confines of Ellis Island.
While growing up in the Great Depression era, Johnny Cash takes an interest in music and eventually moves out of his Arkansas town to join the air force in Germany. While there, he buys his first guitar and writes his own music, and proposes to Vivian. When they got married, they settled in Tennessee and with a daughter, he supported the family by being a salesman. He discovers a man who can pursue his dreams and ends up getting a record with the boys. Shortly after that, he was on a short tour, promoting his songs, and meets the already famous and beautiful June Carter. Then as they get on the long-term tours with June, the boys, and Jerry Lee Lewis, they have this unspoken relationship that grows. But when June leaves the tour because of his behavior, he was a drug addict. His marriage was also falling apart, and when he sees June years later at an awards show, he forces June to tour with them again, promising June to support her two kids and herself. While the tour goes on, the ...Written by
The screenplay was sent to Joaquin Phoenix on a Friday. He called James Mangold on Monday morning, asking what he needed to do to play the part of Johnny Cash. Mangold told him to go out and buy a guitar, which Phoenix duly did the next day. See more »
Jerry Lee Lewis is backed up by a bass player playing a Fender Precision electric bass, but the bass heard on the soundtrack is an acoustic upright bass. See more »
In the opening credits, Robert Patrick's name appears to pass through the prison bars, like his T-1000 character did in Terminator 2: Judgment Day. See more »
Originally released on DVD in its theatrical incarnation. An extended cut, adding about 16 minutes worth of additional footage into the movie, was released later on. The French Blu-Ray version contains the extended cut, while the American version contains the theatrical version. See more »
In L. A., California, in the 50s and 60s, my daily habit of listening to TOP 40 Radio exposed me to just about every kind of music genre, pretty much all of the time! Interestingly, I eventually acquired a taste for just about all of them, to one degree or another! Well, pretty much everything Jazz, not so much, really, and definitely NOT at all: "Country" music. The ONLY Country album I EVER bought in my ENTIRE life (Well, at least before turning 50!) was "Johnny Cash: His Greatest Hits"!
Upon realizing that they had released a movie about his life, it immediately went to the top of my "Must See" list! What was it about his music that gave it such widespread appeal? Exactly what made Johnny Cash so special? It would be nice to be able to provide a simple, straightforward answer to both questions, but in the film, Walk the Line, it is all too clear, that in real life, when it comes to a human being, things sure can get extremely complicated! So, here we end up with a movie that mirrors the life of its lead character: very interesting, entertaining, multifaceted, but at the same time, often dark, brooding and conflicted! WALK is a film I can wholeheartedly recommend no matter how you feel about Johnny Cash and/or his music.
Quite frankly, for the role of Johnny Cash, Joaquin Phoenix (GLADIATOR) is not someone who would have made my short list, or even my long list, for that matter! Wow, what a surprise! This actor, who was born in Puerto Rico, demonstrates tremendous versatility, both as an actor as well as a singer... (Yes, that is Joaquin Phoenix's own voice in the movie!) However, I think that, at times, Mr. Phoenix comes up just a little bit short when it comes to his ability to project his voice firmly, but his performance, in general, was so masterful, that this point is quite easily overlooked.
What really drives WALK, what gives it its soul and keeps it focused and centered is the repressed romance between Cash and the love of his life, June Carter (Reese Witherspoon - Legally Blonde, Cruel Intentions) Joaquin Phoenix, despite shining in the title role, is overshadowed by Witherspoon's overwhelming screen presence in the scenes where they appear together. Previously, she had never really flagged my attention that much, perhaps other than her notable characterization of Tracey Flick in ELECTION. In most of her roles she seemed to be type cast as the syrupy sweet, but at the same time, somewhat annoying girl next door!
WALK is well worth any time and money you invest to see Reese demonstrate her considerable acting talents ... And how clearly she demonstrates just how stunning those abilities are! Surely, Walk the Line, for many reasons, invites comparison with another film about the life of another famous musician, RAY. Perhaps, there are many common elements in the life of famous musicians: A tragic childhood, years struggling in anonymity, problems with alcohol and drugs, a great deal of conflict and tension in their affectative relationships and great difficulty accepting and managing fame and money. But after all, each story is real and each contains many elements that distinguishes it from others!
Any comments, questions or observations, in English o en Español, are welcome!
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