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Of The Road by Cormac McCarthy - Movie Review Example

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The Road is a literary wonder penned by Cormac McCarthy in 2006, which details the life of a father and son in a post-apocalyptic world, where an unknown calamity has driven humanity to near-extinction. The unnamed protagonist along with his son try to survive with whatever…
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Movie Review of The Road by Cormac McCarthy
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s The Road and I am Legend The Road is a literary wonder penned by Cormac McCarthy in 2006, which details the life of a father and son in a post-apocalyptic world, where an unknown calamity has driven humanity to near-extinction. The unnamed protagonist along with his son try to survive with whatever meagre resources that they have. The novel was adapted into a feature film, but it is interesting to note that the themes and arcs discussed in the novel are similar to other cinematic and other literary pieces as well. The essay will compare The Road with the movie adaptation of I am Legend.
I am Legend is another 2007 post-apocalyptic tale based on the novel of the same name, which tells the story of Dr. Robert Neville, a lone survivor of a lethal disease outbreak, which was initially meant to be a cure for cancer. Neville’s family perished in an accident during the evacuation and ever since then, he only lives to find a cure and other survivors in the area. The Road and I am Legend incorporate similar character arcs and themes, of which the most dominant theme is that of loneliness.
Neville has his dog, while the unnamed protagonist in The Road fights for the survival of him and his son, they are completely isolated in their endeavors. They live in constant fear of the antagonists, who are actively chasing and pursuing them, which has destroyed the basic concept of a home and pushed humanity to primitive way of life, where they lived in constant fear of being attacked by other beasts.
Both Neville and Cormac’s protagonist were victims of a global unrest, which was out of the locus of their control. However, the antagonists in I am Legend were simply infected and had no control over their actions, but in The Road, the cannibals were conscious individuals, who had resorted to eating people in order to survive. Hence, while I am Legend, establishes the antagonists as mere victims, The Road tries to underline a gruesome aspect of human behavior that stemmed from a primal instinct of ‘survival of the fittest’. The cannibals were conscious individuals who had willingly chosen to eat their peers or be eaten, therefore reinforcing the concept that human beings would go to any extent in order to salvage themselves.
Both stories follow a similar progression of events, along with similar character transformation but they were brought about by different catalysts. For instance, Neville is pushed to the edge and comes to terms with his mortality after losing his last remaining family member, his dog. On the other hand, Cormac’s protagonist realizes that he is about to die and therefore, only struggles to get his son to safety. Neville tries to make one last contribution to humanity by giving away the cure for the disease that he had been working, whereas Cormac’s protagonist tries to preserve the core principles in his son by reminding him the importance of survival, but also maintaining and keeping his humanity alive. The latter is also a lesson for his son to continue living, but not conforming to any of the standards or practices that are set by people around him.
The protagonists die off, but leave behind a part of themselves symbolically. In conclusion, both the film and the book shed light on a common fear of man, which is that of technology. Humanity has worked hard in order to get to this level of progress, but to this day, they are scared that an unforeseen disaster might push them back to where they started. Therefore, it can be rightfully deduced that both of the stories discuss not only humanity’s fear of losing the technology and progress that they have created, but it is also the fear of natural calamities which are beyond their conscious control.
Works Cited
McCarthy, Cormac. The Road. New York: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group. 2006. Print.
I am Legend. Dir. Francis Lawrence. Perf. Will Smith, Emma Thompson & Alice Braga. Village Roadshow Pictures, 2007. DVD. Read More
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