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Author Topic: A Walk in the Woods
Steve Klare
Film Guy

Posts: 7016
From: Long Island, NY, USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted September 08, 2015 02:58 PM      Profile for Steve Klare   Email Steve Klare   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
So I was watching the 'Tube the recently and saw that "A Walk in the Woods" was opening up in theaters this week.

I got a lot more excited than usual when a new feature is coming out because this is one of my favorite books by one of my favorite authors: Bill Bryson.

-basically it goes something like this: well middle-aged Bill Bryson discovers that the Appalachian Trail passes by his recently acquired New Hampshire home.

Gradually the idea takes hold in his head to hike the thing...soon he says "Why not?!"

The entire remainder of the book is packed with examples of why not!

He talks to various friends about going with him, since his wife absolutely forbids him going it alone and the only taker is his old friend Stephen Katz who is barely in shape for a walk to the store, never mind over 2,000 miles from Maine to Georgia.

The thing I've always loved about this book is very often when you look at books about outdoor sports, it's always the expert: the guy who once competed in the Olympics, who has the $5,000 carbon fiber hiking staff and the cost-as-much-as-a-house backpack. Of course he thinks you're a wimp if you can't complete the AT: he's done it five times including last year after he messed up his leg skiing! (-and he's better at THAT than you are too!)

"A Walk in the Woods" is outdoorsmanship for the rest of us, they are in no way mentally, physically or psychologically ready to do this (just like ME!).

I actually owe a debt to Bill Bryson: whatever foolish ideas I ever had about through hiking the AT died a merciful death at his hands when I read this book! I stick to the local trails and then go home for a warm meal and a real bed!

This is a poor book to read on public transportation: there are times you just can't help but laugh hysterically and your fellow passengers may find that scary! (Seriously: Never read a Bryson book while you are drinking a soda: your nasal passages will never forgive you!)

The movie? Well, Mr. Redford and Nolte are pushing double the age they should be for these parts, but I still have hopes for it.

The sad part is when I see a movie, the face of the actor is forever plastered on that character whenever I encounter him again. I am reading "A Walk in the Woods" right now and Bill Bryson still looks like Bill Bryson in my head. As much as Mr. Bryson might like the idea, I hope the next time I read one of his books he doesn't look like Robert Redford!

Word on the street is this was filmed, on FILM!

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All I ask is a wide screen and a projector to light her by...

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Janice Glesser
Film Goddess

Posts: 3468
From: Sunnyvale, CA USA
Registered: Sep 2011


 - posted September 08, 2015 07:43 PM      Profile for Janice Glesser   Email Janice Glesser   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Steve...if you put any stock into film reviews and plan on seeing this movie, you might be setting yourself up for disappointment. I haven't read the book, but I'm interested in hearing your feedback since you really enjoyed the book. I like both Robert Redford and Nick Nolte. Seems like it would be fun to see them in a movie together.

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Janice

"I'm having a very good day!"
Richard Dreyfuss - Let It Ride (1989).

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Steve Klare
Film Guy

Posts: 7016
From: Long Island, NY, USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted September 08, 2015 08:07 PM      Profile for Steve Klare   Email Steve Klare   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I knowwwww......I knowwww!!!!

Going to see a movie based on a book you love is risky business, and certainly the reviews on this one haven't been all great, but I have to see this!

If nothing else there should be a lot of scenery so it needs to be seen on the big screen.

The real shame of it is they managed to stick a better ending on the Sean Connery movie than Tom Clancy did on "The Hunt for Red October", but I doubt that will happen this time.

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All I ask is a wide screen and a projector to light her by...

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Steve Klare
Film Guy

Posts: 7016
From: Long Island, NY, USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted September 09, 2015 10:17 AM      Profile for Steve Klare   Email Steve Klare   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
So I have reached chapter 10 in "A Walk in The Woods".

-Katz and Bryson were "sleeping" in a shelter along the trail. Every so often they awoke to a mouse (hopefully just a mouse...) skittering across their sleeping bags. The sad part is they were so tired they actually ignored them!

-Once again: as much as I enjoy doing things in the great outdoors reading things like this means through hiking the AT will never reach my bucket list!

They left the trail in Tennessee and Bryson was looking at a four foot long map of the trail at a local store. The amount they'd covered in about 8 chapters of rain, snow, mud and fatigue scaled out to a couple of inches!

This is when they got a ride, skipped a couple of hundred miles north and made it a digest hike!

You have to wonder if Bill Bryson wasn't trying to get a book out of it if they just wouldn't have just gone home!

Bryson talks a lot about how this taught him to appreciate civilization. After a week out in the wilderness he actually felt kind of excited when the trail intersected a paved road and a car or truck rolled past. He spoke very highly of being able to walk into a real building, pull a door closed behind him and flip a light switch as well.

-top of the list were of course hot showers, warm meals and soft beds!

(The things we take for granted!)

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All I ask is a wide screen and a projector to light her by...

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Steve Klare
Film Guy

Posts: 7016
From: Long Island, NY, USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted September 10, 2015 09:05 PM      Profile for Steve Klare   Email Steve Klare   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Jeeze! It's really happening!

I'm still reading "A Walk in the Woods". I'm up to chapter 12 now.

Creepingly (...disturbingly), Katz in my imagination is starting to look like Nick Nolte!

-and I haven't even seen the movie!

(-so WRONG!)

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All I ask is a wide screen and a projector to light her by...

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Janice Glesser
Film Goddess

Posts: 3468
From: Sunnyvale, CA USA
Registered: Sep 2011


 - posted September 10, 2015 09:11 PM      Profile for Janice Glesser   Email Janice Glesser   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
LOL [Smile] ....Must be good casting.

--------------------
Janice

"I'm having a very good day!"
Richard Dreyfuss - Let It Ride (1989).

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Steve Klare
Film Guy

Posts: 7016
From: Long Island, NY, USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted December 28, 2016 11:08 PM      Profile for Steve Klare   Email Steve Klare   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Well...

Life being what it is I never got to seeing this movie in the theaters. It did feature prominently on my Christmas list so I got the DVD on the 25th.

Overall, It'd say I liked it. I thought they left out a lot of details the novel explored, but then again who wants a four hour movie about a pair of old guys hiking?!

My biggest disappointment is the loss of a moment in the movie when Katz and Bryson are exhausted from a day on the trail yet are shoved out of a lean-to by a bunch of drunken wannabee hikers. They spend the night tenting in the rain, but a couple of miles out on the trail the next morning Katz reveals he left camp with every last bootlace the party crowd had that night!

The ending is kid of abrubt: Bryson turns to Katz and asks "You wanna go home?" and Katz agrees they've gone far enough.

There was a lot more to this in the book.

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All I ask is a wide screen and a projector to light her by...

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Trevor Adams
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 763
From: Auckland,New Zealand
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted December 30, 2016 04:51 PM      Profile for Trevor Adams   Author's Homepage   Email Trevor Adams   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Enjoyed Mr B reading the book(audiobook).Film was rubbish though.

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Trevor

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Steve Klare
Film Guy

Posts: 7016
From: Long Island, NY, USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted December 30, 2016 05:21 PM      Profile for Steve Klare   Email Steve Klare   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I think I'm so wrapped up in the book that as long as the movie wasn't complete crap I would have found something good in it!

After I read this book I actually started going from friend to friend saying "You should try this!". I liked it that much!

My wife read it, and kept asking me "Do they make it?!!". I kept telling her "You're going to have to finish it."

-The ending of the book is kind of poignant (Two ordinary men admitting their own limits) and you need to finish the book to understand why it was OK they didn't make it.

Maybe it was as if somebody made a really fleshed out feature length treatment of the book, and what I saw was a lesser digest print! There was so much left out.

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All I ask is a wide screen and a projector to light her by...

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