Evelyn GoughIn the Picture
Walk the Line (M)
Directed by James Mangold
This time last year I was raving about the biopic Ray and predicting an Oscar win for its star Jamie Foxx.
Equally as impressive are the performances in Walk the Line, the story of country music legend Johnny Cash, starring Joaquin Phoenix as the man in black and Reese Witherspoon as his soulmate June Carter.
Just like Ray Charles, Elvis, Loretta Lynn and numerous other music stars Johnny Cash proved that America really is the land of opportunity. Providing you have the talent and the drive you can rise from dirt poor beginnings and become a legend.
Walk the Line begins when Cash is 12 (played by Ridge Canipe) and living in Arkansas with his sharecropping father (Robert Patrick), mother (Shelley Lynne) and beloved brother Jack (Lucas Till).
As it did in Ray Charles story, the tragic death of a much loved brother will impact on Cash throughout his whole life, his feelings of inadequacy reinforced by a cold, unloving father.
As his star rises so does Cashs dependence on drugs and alcohol. The one person willing and able to make him walk the line is the love of his life, country singer June Carter (Reese Witherspoon).
I have to admit Ive never been a huge Joaquin Phoenix fan but thats all changed. Both he and Reese revealed that these were the most challenging roles they had ever played but they give their all to the performances, singing every note themselves.
And what impressive and remarkable performances they are! I was blown away.
You dont have to be a Johnny Cash fan to appreciate this moving, totally absorbing and extremely well made movie.