Monday, June 11, 2012

Show me The Way

If you are looking for a movie that will make you cry, this will do it.

If you are looking for one that will make you laugh, this one fits the bill.

If you are looking for a movie that will make your heart want to burst out of your chest, yep, I got one for you.

I'm talking about "THE WAY".

Have you heard of it?

Emilio Estevez both produced and stars in it, along with his father, Martin Sheen. They play father and son in the movie, too.

Tom Avery (Martin) is an opthalmologist who doesn't have a great relationship with his son, Daniel, ever since Daniel's mother passed away. Daniel decides to quit school and working on his dissertation. He'd rather learn different cultures by traveling around the world. Some time later Tom gets a call that Daniel was killed in the Pyrenees during a storm while walking the "Camino de Santiago (The Way of St. James), a Catholic pilgrimage route to the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Galicia, Spain.

Tom must fly to France to claim his son's body. Tom decides in honor of his son, he will walk the Camino de Santiago, spreading his son's ashes along the way. Tom befriends three other pilgrims along the way; a Dutchman, and Irishman, and a Canadian woman. All have their reasons for walking.

Here is a short clip of the movie:

I will guarantee that you will love this movie!

I had never heard of the Camino de Santiago before this movie. This is a real pilgrimage that began over a thousand years ago!

Legend states that St. James's remains were carried by boat from Jerusalem to northern Spain where he was buried on the site of what is now the city of Santiago de Compostela. The Way can take one of any number of pilgrimage routes to Santiago de Compostela. Traditionally, the Way of Saint James began at one's home and ended at the pilgrimage site. However a few of the routes are considered main ones. During the Middle Ages, the route was highly traveled. However, the Black Death, the Protestant Reformation and political unrest in 16th-century Europe led to its decline. By the 1980s, only a few pilgrims arrived in Santiago annually. Since then however the route has attracted a growing number of modern-day pilgrims from around the globe. The route was declared the first European Cultural Route by the Council of Europe in October 1987; it was also named one of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. (Wikipedia)

This route was originally a Roman trade route and once nicknamed "Milky Way" because it followed the Milky Way to the Atlantic Ocean.

The Way of St. James is highlighted in red. 

The symbol of the Camino de Santiago is the scalloped shell.

plain scalloped shell, one with the Santiago de Compostela church stamped on it, and what I assume to be a water jug?

The scalloped shell is said to have many meanings:

  • When the disciples shipped James' body to the Iberian Peninsula to be buried at Santiago, a storm hit the ship and the body was lost at sea. Sometime later, the body washed ashore, unharmed, covered in scallops.
  • After James' death, his body was mysteriously transported to the Iberian Peninsula on a ship with no crew. When it came to Santiago, a wedding was taking place. The groom was on a horse. The horse got spooked from the approaching ship and jumped in the water. The groom and horse were rescued, but when they came out of the water, they were covered with shells.
  • Looking at the scalloped shell, the grooves represent the many paths the pilgrims take to get to the same point - the tomb of St. James.
  • Supposedly the shell was used by the pilgrim for drinking water and could be used as a bowl.
Here are some pictures of scalloped shells along the route.

St.James' shell at a well of the Way, Saint-Guilhem-le-D├ęsert, Languedoc-Roussillon, France
Spain - Leon
This is the modern symbol of The Way.
The pilgrims have a "passport" and get it stamped along the way.

Once the pilgrims reach the town of Santiago, they go to the Pilgrim's Office. The pilgrims must have walked a minimum of 100 km or biked at LEAST 200 km. The passport is carefully examined for the appropriate stamps before the compostela (certificate of accomplishment) is awarded. 

Go ahead and rent the movie, "The Way". There is so much more to see and learn. You will really enjoy it!


Teresa - in the Middle Side of Life said...

what a great synopsis of the movie! i'm definitely going to have to check it out. thanks for the wonderful background.

SquirrelQueen said...

Thanks for all the background info Pat. I have heard of this movie and being a fan of Martin Sheen I want to see it.

Brian Miller said...

have yet to see the movie...though it is on the list....intersting bit about the shells and the symbolism in it as well...very cool...

kisatrtle said...

Looks interesting...

Eva Gallant said...

It looks interesting; love the actors. I usually stay away from movies that make me cry, however; I have had enough sadness in my life. I don't read tear-jerker books like those written by Nicholas Sparks, either. I'm strange like that!

Adam said...

I love when fathers and sons play the same role relationship in the movies.

Valerie said...

This is definitely a must-see, Pat. Thanks for sharing. I look forward to seeing the movie.

Jeannelle said...

Very interesting! I will try and see this movie.

Annmarie Pipa said...

thanks for the review and recommendation...we are always looking for a good movie...haven't seen one in a long while..

becky said...

To say I loved this movie is an understatement. I saw it twice at the theater, then bought the DVD & have watched it another 3 times. I don't do that! such a wonderful, heartfelt film... and a poignant reminder to live & love life.


Love this piece that you wrote and intend to get the movie. THANKS. So few really good ones anymore. I look forward to this one.
Fate brought me here today.
If only we'd listen to our hearts and fate more often.
Blessings, Barb
Hope you and the condo are getting along okay. Jim too.