“The Walk” wants you to admire Philippe Petit. Petit was a young French stunt performer that adored working on the high wire. Practicing his tight rope skill under the careful eye of Ben Kingsley, Petit dared to tackle something grandiose. That’s when he saw news footage of the World Trade Center nearing completion of its construction. Throwing together a team of semi-professionals, Petit dares to walk between the Towers days before its grand opening.
Some might ask why I ranked this film so high and what they might’ve missed when the movie died a brutal death at the box office. Well, Zemeckis is back and his 3D fetishism is in check. The once and future framer of Roger Rabbit has found a knack to blend spectacle with storytelling. While it is half love letter to 1970s Americana, the other half is a dedicated look at what drives performance. Whether it’s the crew desperately doubting their ability to pull off the stunt or Petit’s overconfidence, these people are obsessed with pulling off the job.
There’s a certain majesty to practicing a craft and working on it against all odds. Couple that with the push to make the film a family friendly PG and you have a release that should’ve been inspirational to a wide audience. What you get is a well orchestrated film that will eventually find life on home video. It’s a shame, but not everything is going to be a winner out of the gate. By the time this entry goes lives, you’ll be two weeks out from the film hitting Blu-Ray and DVD. Go ahead and preorder it.
RELEASE DATE: 10/2/2015