The Road

The Road

John Hillcoat (2009)

15 Certificate


Our Score
Although Hollywood often treats spectacular destruction as entertainment, this adaptation of the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by Cormac McCarthy is soberingly serious. In an ashen post-apocalyptic landscape, a man and his son make a perilous journey across America searching for better prospects. After the breakdown of society, what's left except to scavenge the remaining food then turn to human prey? And what price morality when basic survival's at stake? Director John Hillcoat (The Proposition) takes on these weighty philosophical questions, and creates a convincingly desolate fresco of modern life at the end of its tether. Viggo Mortensen might be just a bit too rugged as the careworn dad, but Kodi Smit-McPhee's performance as the vulnerable boy is deeply touching, without a hint of child-actor precocity. The multiple threats faced by the father and son ensure there's constant tension, even though the plot's a fairly skeletal affair. Ultimately, this bracingly austere film falls a little short of the greatness of the book, but it's still a terrifyingly effective warning that we squander the planet's resources at our peril.


The world is devastated by a cataclysm that wipes out all the plants and animals and leaves the few remaining humans desperately struggling to survive. A man and his son make an arduous journey across a desolate America inhabited by cannibals, in search of sanctuary further south. Drama based on Cormac McCarthy's novel, starring Viggo Mortensen, Kodi Smit-McPhee, Charlize Theron, Robert Duvall and Guy Pearce.

Cast & Crew

Man Viggo Mortensen
Boy Kodi Smit-McPhee
Old man Robert Duvall
Veteran Guy Pearce
Woman Charlize Theron
Motherly woman Molly Parker
The thief Michael Kenneth Williams
Gang member Garret Dillahunt
Director John Hillcoat
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: IconGuidance: Violence, swearing, nudity.Available on: DVD and Blu-rayReleased on: 8 Jan 2010