Cormac McCarthy's best-selling novel, The Road, is a harrowing read. Set in a nuclear wasteland, the post-apocalyptic tale follows a father and son journeying south towards a warmer climate. As they travel across the desolate landscape, they scavenge for food and are forced to hide from other survivors, many of whom have resorted to cannibalism. The film adaptation is currently in production, scheduled for a fall release.
The phenomenal roster of talent should help translate McCarthy's barebones prose well into film. Helming the film is John Hillcoat, who proved with The Proposition that he's capable of directing a bleak, desperate tale. The cast includes Viggo Mortensen, Guy Pearce, Robert Duvall, and Charlize Theron, a first-rate line-up that should garner the film plenty of buzz.
Stills from shooting are already trickling out, and with the film's release scheduled for November, we should be seeing a preview of The Road in the next month or two. I'm anxious to see the final product in the theater, but it's not much of a leap to assume that the viewing experience will be particularly unpleasant. The novel haunted my dreams for weeks, so a visual experience will probably have me sleeping with the lights on for the next month.
On to lighter news in dystopic film development. Tales of human struggle for survival in a grim future aren't just for adults anymore. Children can get in on the post-apocalyptic action this October with City of Ember. Based on the popular young adult novel, the film follows Lina (Atonement's Saoirse Ronan) and Doon (Control's Harry Treadaway) as they try to restore power to their dying city, the only light in a desolate, underground world. The production features Bill Murray as a corrupt mayor, set on keeping the metropolis in the dark. But with Tim Robbins, Marianne Jean-Baptiste and the legendary Martin Landau rounding out the cast, City of Ember has all the star power it needs.