A Look Back: Walk the Line

Walk the Line is still today one of my 10 to 15 favorite movies of all time, because well, it is awesome, and I have always been a huge Johnny Cash fan.

This film is not necessarily about his entire life but about many different parts of it, from, how he lost his brother at a young age that led to his awful relationship with his father, to his music career, to drug addiction and the main point of the film, his love affair with June Carter.

I think that sometimes this movie gets kind of lost in the grand scheme of really good films. It has been about 10 years since it released into theater and while it received critical acclaim it is rarely mentioned when discussing some of the better movies of the past decade.  Reese Witherspoon’s performance as June Carter is one of my favorite performances of any role she has ever done and honestly in any movie I can think of off the top of my head and was more than worthy of her Academy Award win for the role. The chemistry on screen that her a Joaquin Phoenix share is also remarkable to watch and still holds up 10 years later.

Phoenix was equally eye opening for his role as Cash for which he was nominated for an Oscar for best actor but the most amazing thing to me looking back on it was the fact that Joaquin and Reese did all of the vocals for the film themselves.  Obviously, some of the things in the movie were embellished like Cash passing out on stage in Vegas during a show, and from everything I understand the relationship with his first wife was not exactly how it was portrayed in the film, but this is something that still packs a punch today.

While it was not written or directed in any special way that stands out, Phoenix and Witherspoon were able to carry the film in a way that the cast (outside of Tom Hiddleston) in the recent biopic I Saw the Light about Hank Williams was not.  It was basically the same film but outside of Hiddleston did not hold the same water that Walk the Line was able to hold.

While I Saw the Light was a good but not great pretty forgettable movie as a whole, Walk the Line is something that people should not forget so quickly, because the performances deserve to be remembered.


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