Movies reviews with matching food – eat, watch, enjoy
I love the open road with the windows down, the stereo blasting my favourite tune and my hair blowing in the wind. There’s no deadlines, no real destination, just the road, the car and heaps of junk food. When you’re on a road trip, the service station person becomes your best friend. You’re care-free so you’ll talk to anyone and best friends are made in the strangest of places. Road trips spell freedom and that’s why movies about long drives are so popular.
The typical road-trip film goes like this: drama happens at home, person packs up their car with their best bud (or soon-to-be best bud) and gets out of town. They meet some strange people, stop in some even stranger towns and find themselves off the beaten track. Soon they are lost and lose all hope of reaching their ultimate destination (if they have one). Then something happens to get them back on track and they finally arrive but because of all the drama, they’ve grown and learned more about themselves than they would have if they had a smooth ride.
The road-trip film is like holding up a mirror to real life. It’s not always an easy, happy experience, there are weird and disgusting things you have to deal with on the way but at the end of the journey, you’re as happy as a clam and wise beyond words!
So, here are my top 10 favourite road flicks you have to see (note: my definition of road-trip is any film featuring any kind of travel/drama/resolution… ie very broad!) :
1. Water for elephants (2011)
I loved this movie. It starts as every journey story does… with disaster. Then comes the train and once Jacob jumps on it he rarely gets off the thing. Across America he travels with the good old circus and a load of crazy circus folk and sick animals. It’s a fantastic, emotional trip through life and time, relationships and death. You’ve gotta see it!
2. Tiger and the Snow (2005)
This little-known Italian film is incredible. It stars the gorgeous Roberto Benigni (from Life is Beautiful) as Attilio de Giovanni who follows the love of his life from Rome to modern-day Baghdad to save her life and win her heart! It is a beautiful film – a journey from lust to love and it rocks!
3. Lord of the Rings (one, two and three – 2001/2002/2003)
This is the ultimate road-trip tale. Drama drips from its jaws as the poor little hobbits are hunted down by a dark lord and his black riders… creeeepy. There’s a merry band of strange folk who travel across the dark land and battle ugly creatures and evil itself. If you haven’t bothered with this awesome trilogy then what are you waiting for?
4. Australia (2008)
I must include this lovely film of my homeland, Australia. It’s not just about the trip across the rugged country, it’s not just about the characters and the history of our great land, it’s about Australia and what it means to be Australian. It’s everything. To me, this is a bit of a gushy, stylised film but I loved it and will watch it again and again and again!
5. The Adventures of Tintin (2011)
Being a kid of the 80s I loved this film but my son loved it even more. There we were in the cinema, most of us sitting back relaxing in anticipation of what this version of ‘Tintin’ was going to be like and there was my boy, on the edge of his seat, glued to the screen the whole time! It has fantastic animation, incredible characters and an engrossing storyline that, yes, included a journey from London to Morocco. Check it out!
6. Elf (2003)
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again… I LOVE this film. It’s the story of Buddy the elf who sets out from the North Pole to New York City to meet his real dad in the ‘real’ world. Will Ferrell is hilarious in this movie and it’s almost tame enough to watch with the kids (with some exceptions!).
7. Voyage of the Dawn Treader (2010)
9. Little Miss Sunshine (2006)
What happens when you chuck a family in a Kombi van and drive across the country together? Mayhem, drama, relationships breakthroughs that’s what! This is a funny little movie with great performances from Steve Carrell and Toni Collette. But it all comes together at the end when the family bands together for the one goal; to watch little Olive in the ‘Little Miss Sunshine’ beauty contest! It’s one sweet road movie.
10. Up (2009)
Every little boy dreams of adventure and Carl Fredricksen is no different. But once dear old Carl grows up and marries childhood sweetheart Ellie, life passes him by and he never achieves his dream to visit Paradise Falls in Venezuela. He becomes a grumpy old man and when the authorities threaten to take him to a home, Carl takes his life into his own hands. Enter a little boy named Russell, a few hundred balloons and off they fly! This is such a lovely film filled with funny moments and a lot of poignancy. Loved it!
Those are my top ten, what are yours?