Travel Talk: The Best Road Flick Ever!

Easy Rider is not the best road trip movie ever made. And though I can watch Thelma and Louise over and over, it doesn’t qualify as the best either.

The best ever road trip flick is, in fact, set in Canada. It’s Joshua Jackson’s “One Week,” which I just watched for the third time.

The best road trip flicks combine two things: fabulous scenery and a journey of sentiment, not necessarily chalked full of feel-good moments, but there must be an emotional unfolding running in parallel with the changing physical landscape.

Joshua Jackson: road-tripping across Canada (Mongrel Media)

Joshua Jackson: road-tripping across Canada (Mongrel Media)

Reach for the Kleenex Now

Premise of “One Week” : Young man in Toronto is suffocating in his school-teacher job. He’s in a marriage of convenience, meaning, it was convenient for him to get married because he didn’t know what else to do with his life at that point. Then one day young man goes to doctor. Doctor gives young man bad news. I mean, really bad news. He’s dying.

So, what comes next? The best Canadian road trip to hit the big screen.

Hero Hops on Motorcycle in Toronto and Starts His Journey

The cross-Canada bike journey starts in Toronto (Mongrel Media)

The cross-Canada bike journey starts in Toronto (Mongrel Media)

There’s a scene shot in a back-lane in Toronto that’s as real as it can get. Older, grizzled biker meets fresh-faced school-teacher who is running for his life.

Hero Heads Out West

Cue to incredible shots of Western Canada, especially Alberta. Hero meets uber friendly folk along the way. Of course, they’re friendly – they’re Canadian. And Westerners are among the friendliest, says my brother Don, who lives in Calgary. (My brother Tim, who lives in Taber, Alberta, would agree.)

Classic Canadian road-trip shot: Rocky Mountains (Mongrel Media)

Classic Canadian road-trip shot: Rocky Mountains (Mongrel Media)

Hero Winds Up On Beach in Tofino, B.C.

Tofino, B.C. in the off-season: Joshua Jackson, "One Week" (Mongrel Media)

Tofino, B.C. in the off-season: Joshua Jackson, "One Week" (Mongrel Media)

Granted, this isn’t the most uplifting image to hit the cinema but, hey, if you’re going to hunker down on a beach on a cold, blustery day, engulfed in misery, then you could do worse than Tofino, British Columbia.

The rest? Well, there are incredible, heart-felt moments, and scenes that take your breath away. (Think: Joshua Jackson, his character’s disease gradually taking its toll, riding a horse by his lonesome self on the stark Prairies.) The landscape should have received an Oscar or Genie Award nod for best supporting role. Jackson alone in an old growth forest, or standing by the side of the road against a backdrop of the majestic Canadian Rockies, the vast empty Prairies… Each of these scenes underscores how small we are and how immense our world really is.

My rating:a postcard perfect picture.

What’s your favourite road flick?