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Into The Wild - A Movie Review

Updated on March 16, 2017

A Review

The movie Into The Wild was released in 2007 and was written and directed by Sean Penn. It is based on a biographical book written by Jan Krakauer. It relates the story of Christopher McCandless (played by Emile Hirsch) who goes on a journey around North America and Alaska in the early part of the 1990s. I saw this DVD recently and found it intriguing.

A large part of the movie is about his 2 years travels in America before he goes to stay alone in Alaska for 4 months. It alternates between his time in Alaska and his travels. What makes someone undertake such an expedition - he wants to experience this way of life on his own leaving friends and family behind.

We see him crossing a river in Alaska and walks until he finds an old abandoned bus which he moves into and calls The Magic Bus. He has a rifle with which he hunts animals in the wild and initially he is charmed by the state of living on his own like this in nature. Later things become more difficult for him and winter in Alaska is no doubt a cold place to be in.


Chris McCandless graduated from Emory University and has his whole life before him but he decides to embark on a journey alone after throwing away his credit cards and identity documents. He also donates most of his $24 000 savings to charity and sets off in his car without telling his parents or his sister Carine (played by Jena Malone). His father, portrayed by William Hurt is conservative and wants his son to do well in life. McCandless has to abandon his car after a flash-flood and meets up with a hippie couple travelling in a van.

He finds some work with a harvesting company but has to leave that and then travels down the Colorado river to Mexico. He moves about by either walking, hitch hiking or riding on freight trains which last mentioned gets him into trouble, thus he must resort to hitch hiking again. Life is a real adventure for him, not always a pleasant one, at other times it's great!

Near Salton City, California, McCandless meets Ron Franz (played by Hal Halbrook) who befriends him and reluctantly sees him off on his way into Alaska, lending him some camping equipment.

Chris McCandless lives for 4 months in Alaska and keeps a journal of his thoughts and experiences. His food starts to run out and he tries to return home but something prevents him. What ultimately happens to him? -the movie reveals all.

The important part of this true story for me is the fact that he realizes he can't survive on his own forever and actually needs to have other people around him - living in isolation is not the answer. Into The Wild received good reviews and is well worth watching.

Take a look at the movie trailer

The Soundtrack

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    • Dave Lynch profile image
      Author

      David Edward Lynch 3 years ago from Port Elizabeth, South Africa

      @Heidi Vincent: Thanks for your comments FreshStart7; if you read the book or see the movie it has a sad ending. Being part of a community like a church or sports club definitely good for people.

    • Heidi Vincent profile image

      Heidi Vincent 3 years ago from GRENADA

      Great review, davdlynch! It is interesting that your protagonist has to spend 4 months in Alaska to realize that he can't survive on his own forever. Just today I came across a speech by Toni Morrison in which she urged students at a University to embrace connectedness.

    • Dave Lynch profile image
      Author

      David Edward Lynch 3 years ago from Port Elizabeth, South Africa

      Thanks for visiting and your comments!

    • Merrci profile image

      Merry Citarella 3 years ago from Oregon's Southern Coast

      Looking forward to watching this movie. Enjoyed the book so much. Thanks for sharing this!