Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Calling Each Thing By Its Rightful Name

Into the Wild was excellent. Not only was the photography beautiful - lots of footage of beautiful landscape and a lovely, golden hue throughout - the storytelling was perfectly paced. Sean Penn did an excellent job capturing and retelling the story of Chris McCandless' ultimately deadly journey to Alaska where he hoped to finally, really live life but, instead, learned that he was woefully ill-prepared and under-skilled for such an undertaking. Foolish, without a doubt. Hair-brained, indeed. Understandable, yes, in an odd way. Heartbreaking, 100%. Maybe what hurts most about the story of McCandless is that, by virtue of what was by all accounts a very engaging personality, he touched too many people and caused them profound sadness when he went out on his own to Alaska. Even more harrowing still is his realization in his final days that happiness is only real when it is shared. How lonely. Not tragic really, just sad.

The movie, much like the book, has a 'stick in your head' quality that I appreciate. Maybe I have spent a bit too much time mulling over the story of McCandless, but it is intriguing to me.

I highly recommend the movie. I also recommend reading the book first if you have time. It is a very quick read, Krakauer always is.

1 comment:

Kitty Brown said...

Interesting. I enjoyed the book, so I've been hesitant to see the movie (so many movies ruin books, that goes without saying). We'll have to check it out.