Religious journey with broad appeal


The Way, stars Martin Sheen, Emilio Estevez, Deborah Kara Unger. Directed by Emilio Estevez

Like most road trips, Emilio Estevez' The Way is a journey best taken with an open mind. When I read the premise of former Brat Pack member Estevez' film about a man who travels the famous ancient Christian pilgrimage route, the Camino de Santiago, to honour his dead son, I feared I would be verbally bludgeoned with messages of salvation and a sermon delivered from the silver screen.

Thousands of pilgrims each year hike the famous 800km passageway to the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Galicia in north-west Spain where they believe the remains of the Apostle, St James, are buried, most in search of religious enlightenment.

Thankfully, you don't need to be of any particular religious persuasion to enjoy The Way, with Estevez choosing to focus on the personal dimension of spirituality rather than big divisive issues.

The Way is not, as one observer put it, a hymn to religion, more a sentimental tale of self-discovery and catharsis.

The tone is set from the moment we meet American divorcee Tom (Martin Sheen) taking a call on the golf course telling him that his son, Daniel (Estevez) has been killed in a hiking accident in Spain.


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