September 24, 2019
Walden: Life in the Woods, a re-imagining of Henry David Thoreau’s classic Walden, will travel to DVD, VOD and EST Oct. 1 from Virgil Films.
Taking place over 24 hours, the film interlaces Thoreau’s themes of solitude, friendship and society via three contemporary narratives about the trappings of modern life and the unlikely transcendentalists who dream dangerously of escape.
In “Solitude,” 80-year old Alice plays detective of the soul, wading through her murky past, trying to uncover a core memory, which leads her to attempt to break free from the walls of her dementia — and her nursing home. In “Friendship,” Luke leads his partner Guy on a surreal journey into the Rocky Mountains as well as into parts of himself he dares not confront. In “Society,” family man Ramirez moves through the morass of a middle-class existence —mortgage, health insurance, failing home appliances — and spends a biblically hilarious day navigating the bureaucratic inferno of civilized society.
Throughout the day, the ordinariness of the characters’ minutes ticking by collides with sudden sublime and surreal interruptions. As Thoreau knew, intuition comes in glimpses and flashes, fits and starts. The three narratives have literal intersection, yet they merge most pointedly in the climax of the film in a moment of spiritual epiphany at three different “ponds.” In moments of crisis, the characters confront what Thoreau thought was ultimately more profound than the wilderness: our inner wild.
The film stars Demian Bichir, Lynn Cohen, Erik Hellman, Tony Loverde, Chris Sullivan and T.J. Miller.