Into the Wild isn't just one of my favorite movies. Into the Wild probably is no 1 on my list of my most favorite movies of all time. So don't expect to read an opinion about it.
Think of this to be more of a … love confession.
So I declare to be head over heels in love with this movie, the characters, the story, the messages, the dialogues, the music, the photography, the locations and the way it was directed by the -not only extraordinary actor but also great filmmaker- Sean Penn.
It all started in 1996 when American writer and mountaineer Jon Krakauer, published his novel "Into the Wild". In it he told the true story of 20 year old Christopher McCandless, son of a bourgeois family, excellent student and athlete, who, the day after his graduation from college, decides to oppose to his predetermined future -going to Law School and becoming a lawyer, give away all -yes all- his personal possessions and after adopting the name Alexander Supertramp, he begins a lonely journey wandering in the American wilderness, first going west and then north to Alaska, and at the same time a journey of self exploration.
The book remained for two years in the best-sellers list of The New York Times and was fortunate in its cinematic rendering after it fell in the able hands of actor/director Sean Penn, who immediately bought the film rights to the book, collaborated with its writer faithfully serving its spirit and the spirit of its hero.
Reasons why you should see this movie and they are countless: the fascinating hero, portrayed by the amazing Emile Hirsch.
The exceptional cast of great actors in supporting roles ( the confirmation to the rule that there are no small roles only small actors).
Notable performances by "the parents" Marcia Gay Harden and William Hurt, "the anachronistic hippies" Catherine Keener and the -non actor- Brian H. Dierker, "the farmer from the south" Vince Vaughn, or the "before the twilight" Kristen Stewart, not forgetting the Oscar nominated for this movie "perennial grandfather" Hal Holbrook. The great cinematography by the French Eric Gautier (also responsible for the "Motorcycle Diaries"), the music of Eddie Vedder, the also Oscar nominated editing and the outstanding achievement in direction by Sean Penn.
Characterizations like: poetic, lyrical, breathtaking, overwhelming etc., have been over-used and for the wrong films. For this one I would add magical.
The director seems not only to identify with the hero and his beliefs; he is carried away by his stubbornness, rebelliousness, idealism, vulnerability, cruelty and his youthful impetuousness and stays loyal to him, even when he mistakes.
I am not going to spoil it for those of you who haven't seen this film and reveal too much for its plot and all it is about. The issues it raises are too many and fundamental, so you can discover them your selves.
What I can tell you for sure is that with this movie you will travel, you will wonder, you will doubt, you will be enticed, you will taste the most delicious apple, you will swim in icy cold water, you will be moved.
The older ones will remember the best versions of your selves, when you were young, fully committed, non negotiable and thought you had all the answers.
Perhaps then you will agree to the conclusion, lonely Christopher carved, inside a broken bus, in the vastness of Alaska .
You can find more reviews on my blog Cinelina