I watched the Camino film, The Way, just before I moved from the UK to Andalucia, Spain.
What a tale of tragedy, friendship, and Camino spirit!
I laughed and cried, as I vicariously walked the Road to Santiago with the main characters led by Martin Sheen. Martin played the grieving father who travelled to the Camino de Santiago to recover his son’s body. His son, Daniel had died in the Pyrenees on the first day of his Camino.
Emilio Estevez plays Daniel, who, against his father’s wishes, quits his job to take off to explore the world. His adventures lead him to St. Jean Pied du Port on the Camino de Santiago, from where he begins his journey.
On his first day of walking, he detours from the route and loses his way. His body is later found by pilgrims walking the way.
His grieving father, Tom, who is played by Martin Sheen, travels to Spain to collect his cremated ashes. Devastated by the loss, he decides to walk the Camino de Santiago to honour his son’s memory while scattering his ashes along the way.
Partially due to his grief and partially down to his close-mindedness, he rebuffs the friendship of his fellow pilgrims. Enter Joost (played by Yorick van Wageningen), a pot-smoking Dutch guy who won’t take no for an answer, Sarah (played by Deborah Kara Unger), a bitter chain-smoking Canadian woman, and Jack (played by James Nesbitt), an Irish writer suffering from extreme writer’s block.
Tom’s Camino family was born, even if he initially rejects them.
A “Camino family” is a big deal on the Camino de Santiago. Pilgrims walking along the way band together in little groups, often forming a Camino family for the duration of the trip.
Indeed, a Camino family is often for life due to the strength of the connections that are made.
The film follows their journey along the way through stunning Spanish countryside that showcases the Spanish landscape, culture, and cuisine.
Tom eventually opens up to his Camino family, sharing his grief over the death of his son. Finally, they arrive at the Cathedral de Santiago, having forged a lifelong connection and bond, their pilgrimage is completed.
Do I recommend The Way? Definitely. The Way is a wonderful film to learn more about the Camino, to see the spectacular countryside of Northern Spain, and to understand why the Camino is such an amazing experience.
If you plan to walk the Camino de Santiago, check out my book, A Wild Woman’s Guide To The Camino de Santiago. I share everything you need to know before you begin your Camino. Read at A Wild Woman’s Guide To The Camino De Santiago or click the link below.
(c) Samantha Wilson 2019. All Rights Reserved.