Twelve people have walked on the moon, but only one man - Philippe Petit (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) - has ever, or will ever, walk in the immense void between the World Trade Center towers. Guided by his real-life mentor, Papa Rudy (Ben Kingsley), and aided by an unlikely band of international recruits, Petit and his gang overcome long odds, betrayals, dissension and countless close calls to conceive and execute their mad plan. Robert Zemeckis, the director of such marvels as Forrest Gump, Cast Away, Back to the Future, Polar Express and Flight, again uses cutting edge technology in the service of an emotional, character-driven story. With innovative photorealistic techniques and IMAX 3D wizardry, The Walk is true big-screen cinema, a chance for moviegoers to viscerally experience the feeling of reaching the clouds. The film, a PG-rated, all-audience entertainment for moviegoers 8 to 80, unlike anything audiences have seen before, is a love letter to Paris and New York City in the 1970s, ...Written by
Sony Pictures Entertainment
Philippe steps out onto the wire at one hour and thirty minutes in. See more »
St. Paul's Chapel is incorrectly oriented, as it is shown to face west, toward the Twin Towers. St. Paul's Chapel faces east, toward Broadway. See more »
"Why?" That is the question people ask me most. Pourquoi? Why? For what? Why do you walk on the wire? Why do you tempt fate? Why do you risk death. But, I don't think of it this way. I never even say this word, death. La mort. Yes of okay, I said it once, or maybe three times, just now... But watch, I *will* not say it again. Instead, I use the opposite word. Life. For me, to walk on the wire, this is life. C'est la vie.
[now standing in the torch of the Statue of Liberty]
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Adaptation of "Sugar Sugar"
Written by Jeff Barry and Andy Kim
Adapted by Arlette Kotchounian
Performed by Claude François
Courtesy of Mercury Records France
Under license from Universal Music Enterprises See more »
What did you expect from the director of Back to the Future and Forrest Gump? Robert Zameckis has another thoroughly enjoyable film, The Walk, about Philippe Petit's (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) high-wire walk between the World trade Center's twin towers in 1974. It's as romantic as Gump and addictive as Future with the added interest of a biopic that is true to its history.
From the first moment we meet Petit talking to us from the top of the Statue of Liberty, and this story is about freedom if nothing else, we know we are in the presence of a man who has followed his dream and achieved it. To co-writers Zameckis and Christopher Browne must go praise for giving the Frenchmen poetic English in small doses, just enough to elevate the proceedings from nuts and bolts to heady ambition.
Those 15 minutes on the wire are as suspenseful as possible—a mark of the true auteur, who can make us worry for our hero even though we know he will survive (he does narrate after all, and some audience will remember Man on a Wire, the excellent doc from 2008). Because Zameckis knows his special effects, I was mesmerized by the shots from atop the towers to the street below. Although I don't like heights anyway, I had to look down every time in wonder at the scope of the danger to Petit.
While the Walk is about this extraordinary man, it is also a romantic eulogy to the towers, which arguably became favorites of New Yorkers after Petit's stunt. The "forever" pass to the top of the towers he receives as a reward from the city is painfully ironic considering 9/11. Because his feat was once in a lifetime, perhaps the passing of the towers reminds us that nothing lasts "forever."
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