|The Frankfurt-Tipp rating:
|Approx. 123 min.
All his life, Philippe Petit (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) has been a rebel and a dreamer. As a street performer in Paris, he is only able to live out his passion for tightrope acrobatics to a limited extent. Even a spectacular feat in which he illegally balanced between the towers of Notre Dame didn't bring him quite the fulfillment. For there is a much bigger, more dangerous challenge he wants to take on in the early 1970s: he wants to stretch a tightrope between the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York, which are about to be completed, and then walk from one tower to the other at a height of 417 metres. With the help of a small squad of initiates, the roofs of the towers are scouted and the materials smuggled into the World Trade Center. But when, after many months of preparation, this actually succeeds, it is only the beginning of a spectacular operation that will make history.
The true story told by Academy Award winner Robert Zemeckis (Forrest Gump, Back to the Future) in his latest film, The Walk, has already been covered in extremely stirring fashion in the Academy Award-winning documentary Man on Wire. The film managed to do that in such a gripping and involving way that there was really no need for a feature film to tell the same story again. But there is a very special reason to see this version in the cinema. But more about that in a moment. First, though, let's assess the film in general.
Zemeckis has chosen to start the story in the form of a biopic, which then seems to morph into a sweet romance, only to mutate into an amusing heist movie. Thanks to the good-humored acting of lead actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt and a script bursting with wonderful ideas and great dialogue, the individual parts of the story also work extremely well. And if the whole thing then becomes a magnificently filmed declaration of love for New York and the Twin Towers, then The Walk is finally quite great entertainment cinema.
The equipment and the effects let the early 1970s perfectly come alive again. Zemeckis prepares his audience for the titular balancing act with plenty of wit and charm, and it's perfectly executed in every way. The dramaturgical build-up is excellently directed, so that even though you already know the outcome, you're extremely rooting for it from the moment Petit and his team enter the World Tradecenter. And that reaches a dizzying climax as soon as he steps onto the tightrope. And that brings us to the reason that makes this movie a real experience: 3D!
It seems like this technology was made just for this movie. Because the really great 3D effects really make the viewer feel like they are balancing above the streets of New York. It's as dizzying as it is spectacular, as sweaty as it is mesmerizing. What Robert Zemeckis offers his viewers here is pure magic. Thrilling like a thriller, yet full of poetry and magic. This cannot be experienced on any smart TV, iPad or smartphone, no matter how big it is, anywhere near as intensely as in the cinema. This also makes The Walk one of the very few films that you definitely have to see in 3D. Far too often, the three-dimensional effects are a rather unnecessary gadget. Quite pretty to look at, but ultimately not worth the premium on the admission fee. Here, it's a very different story. Here, the 3D not only makes for wonderful images, but also for true experiential cinema that can be a real challenge, especially for viewers with a fear of heights.
The reason why I didn't mention the great 3D effects right away is a very simple one: although it's especially the last half hour that makes the film so appealing, and although everyone will probably talk about the 3D effects first and foremost after seeing it in the cinema, it should also be pointed out that The Walk has become a really good and very beautiful film overall. A charming and rousing plea to live out one's dreams, as crazy as they may be. And for that, it definitely gets a: Absolutely worth seeing!!!
An article by Frankfurt-Tipp