Hard Way Home explores a 28-year-old woman’s journey to let go of her haunted past by undertaking a daunting challenge: thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail. Presenting herself with a test of physical and mental capabilities, and an opportunity to interact with like-minded travelers, the 6-month journey is sure to have a deep impact on the filmmakers’ life.
Today there’s an expectation to be married, own a home, have started a career and be on your way to having your first child by the ripe age of 30. But, the times are changing and with that comes a new feeling of uncertainty and desire toward self-discovery.
In the Spring of 2012, filmmaker Kori Feener began her journey to hike more than 2,000 miles, from start to finish, on the Appalachian Trail. Formally known as thru-hiking, out of the thousands that attempt it, somewhere around 20 percent actually complete the thru-hike. The tension of her decision to complete this journey was felt immediately though the opposition of close friends and family.
Through a reflexive and personal point-of-view storytelling and a cinema verite style of shooting, the documentary engage’s the audience to join Feener on this life-changing experience through nature and her own psyche. By taking a pause out of the everyday existence and breaking life into simple moments, and simple survival needs, the filmmaker will attempt to open a new chapter in life. One aimed at appreciating the beauty of the world, while continuing to move forward and not dwell on what is left behind.
Hard Way Home is about walking through life and preserving it, while allowing for the continuation of growth and discovery. Like the natural region where it gets its name, the film deals with a delicate landscape, both literal and figurative. Where every step matters and every decision can be the difference between the end or continuation of emotional and physical growth.