Scenes from Into the wild – Click thumbnails for full image….
A young man leaves his middle class existence in pursuit of freedom from relationships and obligation.
Was Christopher McCandless a heroic adventurer or a naive idealist, a rebellious 1990s Thoreau or another lost American son, a fearless risk-taker or a tragic figure who wrestled with the precarious balance between man and nature?
McCandless’ quest took him from the wheat fields of South Dakota to a renegade trip down the Colorado River to the non-conformists’ refuge of Slab City, California, and beyond.
Along the way, he encountered a series of colorful characters at the very edges of American society who shaped his understanding of life and whose lives he, in turn, changed.
In the end, he tested himself by heading alone into the wilds of the great North, where everything he had seen and learned and felt came to a head in ways he never could have expected.
Giving up his home, family, all possessions but the few he carried on his back and donating all his savings to charity Christopher McCandless (Emile Hirsch) embarks on a journey throughout America.
His eventual aim is to travel into Alaska, into the wild, to spend time with nature, with ‘real’ existence, away from the trappings of the modern world.
In the 20 months leading up to his Great Alaskan Adventure his travels lead him on a path of self-discovery, to examine and appreciate the world around him and to reflect on and heal from his troubled childhood and parents’ sordid and abusive relationship.
When he reaches Alaska he finds he has been insufficiently prepared for the hardships to come.
Despite making it through the winter his plan is ill-judged and prepares to return home in spring, only to find the stream he crossed in the snow has become an impassable raging torrent and that he is trapped.
With no means of sustaining himself adequately he takes to eating berries and fauna, that he identifies using a book.
Unfortunately, he awakes one morning to find that the berries he consumed the night before were in fact poisonous, and causes him to starve in his so sought after isolation.
Throughout his epic journey the people he meets both influence and are influenced by the person he is and bring him to the eventual and tragic realisation that “Happiness is only real when shared”.