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No love for "Into the Wild" ? - Page 3

post #61 of 108
20 is not 50 my friend.
20 is a kid that goes to school.
When they graduate, it's time for the birdy to fly.
Of course, everything is relative.

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post #62 of 108
i disagree with the actions of the main character in this movie, but the movie is worth watching for the scenery and vedder's soundtrack.

I agree that it could've been about 30 minutes shorter.
post #63 of 108
I could take or leave this movie, but my wife really responded to it--she is haunted by it from a mother's perspective. She is now reading the book and finding out how much Hollywood has glossed over. Surprise, surprise.
post #64 of 108
I have not seen the film yet, but living where I do the true-life event was nearly local news to me. It was widely reported. The fact that this young man pursued his internal demons to such an end is worthy of discussion in itself. How many of us could do the same? Also, the story addresses the age-old man vs nature struggle, something that was discussed among us at the time the story happened. When the news broke, most people realized that we as a society are simply not suited anymore to live off the land. That's the whole point of the story and it frightens us.

Doug
post #65 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Brennan View Post

The movie is about an arrogant idiot and his loser pals. Which would be OK if the movie treated the main character as the fool he was instead of trying to picture him as being noble.

And it's WAY too long in the bargain. Ford, Hawks or Curtiz would'a popped this out as 90 minutes tops. Some of these modern directors should be given scissors for Christmas.

I don't think it treated him as being noble. I think it treated him as a kid whose parents' marriage and manner of bringing up him and his sister seriously messed him up and turned him against their lifestyle and against them for basically lying to their kids about some fundamental things. In the 60s and 70s he would have been a typical hippie from a middle or upper middle class family who rejected the "system" (largely because his parents apparently thought that money was the be-all and end-all in life) in order to find "truth" and "love." He just happened to do the same thing in 1992 instead of 1970. And he had the same naivete and romantic notions they did. I don't know if he saw or realized the hypocrisy of him depending on those who stayed in "society" and "the system" in order to get him to the place in Alaska where he could leave them both behind (to be consistent, he should have used a handmade bow and arrow and a flint knife instead of bullets and a rifle, I would think). He was young, naive, and both running from something and running toward something. I thought the movie was quite well done, and it's gorgeous in Blu-Ray.

"We are stardust, we are golden, we are caught in the devil's bargain, and we've got to get ourselves back to the garden...."

It was 2.5 hours long, and I would easily have enjoyed another 30 minutes. The extras are sparse and a bit disappointing. I have to admit that I get tired of "extras" that are basically gush-fests about how great the actor or the director is, etc. A few comments are fine, but when they go on and on, it gets tiresome and formulaic.

Kristen Stewart (TWILIGHT) and Hal Holbrook and Vince Vaughn have great parts in the movie, esp. Holbrook. The Rainey character was good, too, considering he wasn't even an actor; he was Emile's kayak coach, and when they needed a hippie character, Emile suggested his coach. William Hurt was very good. Heck, they were all good.
post #66 of 108
I tried to watch this the other night, and have to agree with Tom Brennan's POV and say SP should put his Kerouac books down for good.

There is nothing "noble" about being an idiot.
Trying to bend reality to fit some erudite fantasy is just plain silly, not smart.
Maybe at 20 it isn't, but it should be.
Otherwise kids will do what our hero does here: confronting a non-sympathetic Nature without any chance of surviving.

I live in an environment similar to the Alaskan situation portrayed in this film.
You DO NOT do what our boy does here and hope to make it out in the spring.
You DO NOT go out in snow that deep, with no destination, paying no heed to the proper clothing or footware, without concern for getting wet, hoping you will find enough to eat, becoming choosey about what game to shoot, etc.

The wife looked at me after 45 minutes and said she hoped the bears come out of hibernation early and eat the little fnck as an example to others.

Jack Kerouac is dead...enough already, Sean.
post #67 of 108
I actually liked this movie. Although a bit long winded. I'd like to say that you come away from this film learning some great wisdom about life. But all I really learned is that Christopher McCandless was a complete idiot.
post #68 of 108
Not very thought out, to be sure.

Some of us go to a beat of a different drummer, and that can be hard, if not impossible, for others to understand. Maybe he died exactly the way he intended before he came into this life. Who is to know? I view his death as copasetic.
post #69 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aliens View Post

Maybe he died exactly the way he intended before he came into this life.

OK...now we are delving into Eastern Religion.
All I know is the kid didn't die quick enough for me...
post #70 of 108
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by oink View Post

OK...now we are delving into Eastern Religion.
All I know is the kid didn't die quick enough for me...

You're too hard on the dear boy. So what if he's a Darwin award runner up. The film still took me to the places I originally described when I started this thread. I grew up with some folks that were that terminally stupid, but survived...it was the late 60s and early 70s. There is still an occasional throwback .
post #71 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by oink View Post

OK...now we are delving into Eastern Religion.

I find it much more logical and better than this ‘Western’ fairytale (I’m being considerate and kind. In other words; I’m being politically correct).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Temple View Post

I grew up with some folks that were that terminally stupid, but survived...it was the late 60s and early 70s. There is still an occasional throwback .

Considering the human brain isn’t fully developed before the age of 25, it’s a wonder so many baby boomers survived during that era. A marked change in consciousness occurred during that time. As with most movements there are extremes, but I’m proud to be a part of that enlightenment era.
post #72 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Temple View Post

So what if he's a Darwin award runner up.

Runner up? I'd say he stole the Grand Prize!

I liked the guy who played the lead. He reminded me a lot of DeCaprio.
post #73 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Temple View Post

I grew up with some folks that were that terminally stupid, but survived...it was the late 60s and early 70s. There is still an occasional throwback .

I knew people back then whose stupidity WAS terminal.
And looking back it was only sad and a waste.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Aliens View Post

I find it much more logical and better than this Western' fairytale (I'm being considerate and kind. In other words; I'm being politically correct).

Agreed.


Quote:
I'm proud to be a part of that enlightenment era.

We were the BEST generation.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Rutgar View Post

I liked the guy who played the lead. He reminded me a lot of DeCaprio.

He was in Speed Racer too.
post #74 of 108
Have not seen the movie, but the script was really quite good. I was called by a producer to join this production at one time. As it turned out, Mr. Penn and his DP were really making this like a small independent, but with a lot of money (Sean's). I wound up not going because it was almost like the two of them were on their own. Interestingly, that is why I got a call; the studio was nervous about the indulgent manner and logistics that were used. Efficient it was not. The producer (with whom I had worked with before) had hoped that with me there they would not try to do every job themselves. But these guys (Penn primarily) were going to make this movie their way. It was quite remarkable that Sean would grab a camera and jump into a kayak and in the river he would go, etc. The danger of that approach is that it may become self-indulgent creatively...which it sounds like it is a bit.

It says something for Sean's clout and money. Movies just cannot be made the way this one was made because the inefficiency of the logistics make it prohibitively expensive. I'm sure a lot of money was spent to make this "personal," yet financially unsuccessful film.

Although the script was excellent, it was such an emotional downer, I have no desire to see the film and endure it again.
post #75 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cam Man View Post

Have not seen the movie, but the script was really quite good. I was called by a producer to join this production at one time. As it turned out, Mr. Penn and his DP were really making this like a small independent, but with a lot of money (Sean's). I wound up not going because it was almost like the two of them were on their own. Interestingly, that is why I got a call; the studio was nervous about the indulgent manner and logistics that were used. Efficient it was not. The producer (with whom I had worked with before) had hoped that with me there they would not try to do every job themselves. But these guys (Penn primarily) were going to make this movie their way. It was quite remarkable that Sean would grab a camera and jump into a kayak and in the river he would go, etc. The danger of that approach is that it may become self-indulgent creatively...which it sounds like it is a bit.

It says something for Sean's clout and money. Movies just cannot be made the way this one was made because the inefficiency of the logistics make it prohibitively expensive. I'm sure a lot of money was spent to make this "personal," yet financially unsuccessful film.

Although the script was excellent, it was such an emotional downer, I have no desire to see the film and endure it again.

Thanx for the insight on the production.
Hopefully, SP got Kerouac out of system without throwing too much $$ down a hole.
You're right, it's hard NOT be dragged down emotionally by human stupidity.
post #76 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cam Man View Post

Although the script was excellent, it was such an emotional downer, I have no desire to see the film and endure it again.

Maybe I'm just an insensitive jerk, but I didn't feel the film was an emotional downer. It had some gorgeous scenes and scenery, some really good acting, and an interesting (to me) human story. He was not a victim of a heinous crime or a gruesome act of violence; there were no vile characters for you to fear or loathe. And despite his naivete, ignorance, and foolishness, the things he did, the reasons he did them (confused though they might be), and the people he met, the relationships he had or formed, and the conversations he engaged in made it for me a thoughtful and emotional film, but not an emotional downer. I'd easily watch it again and hope Netflix puts it in its Watch Instantly HD selections. I don't know how the real man walked or talked, but it was eerie that at the end when the movie closes with an actual photograph of him sitting next to the bus (printed from the undeveloped film in his camera), you don't at first realize that it's the real guy, and not a photo of Emile Hirsch playing him.
post #77 of 108
I thought it was a decent movie, I find it funny that some folks seem to think that in order to enjoy a movie the protagonist must make choices and have beliefs that are in line with their own. I suppose relating to and considering other points of view just isn't for everyone.

My main gripe was that Emile Hirsch just didn't seem to be up to what was a pretty challenging role. A lot of the time I just didn't find him that believable, one example that was particularly glaring was the scene in the bar where he was supposed to be drunk.

Eddie Vedder got the shaft by not even getting an Oscar nomination for his excellent soundtrack.
post #78 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by eweiss View Post

It had some gorgeous scenes and scenery.

Well, now is the time to start planning for that trip up North.
Sure the heck beats TX in the summer (but not the winter...of course).


Quote:
Originally Posted by Hicks View Post

I thought it was a decent movie, I find it funny that some folks seem to think that in order to enjoy a movie the protagonist must make choices and have beliefs that are in line with their own. I suppose relating to and considering other points of view just isn't for everyone.

That isn't what people are complaining about regarding the disposition of the protagonist of this film.
Rather, it is the lack of intelligence, which leads to a tragic and unnecessary end and great pain for his surviving family.
post #79 of 108
Excellent article, Death of an Innocent, by the author of the book the movie was taken from. He also shares his experience that was similar to McCandless.
post #80 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by oink View Post

Well, now is the time to start planning for that trip up North.
Sure the heck beats TX in the summer (but not the winter...of course).




That isn't what people are complaining about regarding the disposition of the protagonist of this film.
Rather, it is the lack of intelligence, which leads to a tragic and unnecessary end and great pain for his surviving family.


Gotcha, so in order to enjoy a movie the protagonist must be "intelligent" and make decisions that do not end up in tragedy.

Using that vague criteria we could say that many of the works of Shakespeare are not worth our time.
post #81 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hicks View Post

Gotcha, so in order to enjoy a movie the protagonist must be "intelligent" and make decisions that do not end up in tragedy.

Using that vague criteria we could say that many of the works of Shakespeare are not worth our time.

No, not at all.

The boy deliberately trespassed into an environment designed to kill the unprepared and the ignorant.
To do so willingly, while ignoring the explicit warnings of experts (ie, the local in the pickup who dropped him off at the end of the road), doesn't generate a lot of sympathy...or admiration.
Nearly everything that happened after that compounded the peril he was in...not enough food, improper footware, the disregard to the danger of getting wet, not eating some of the wildlife, and on and on.
post #82 of 108
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hicks View Post

Using that vague criteria we could say that many of the works of Shakespeare are not worth our time.

That Romeo dude was a dumbass...
post #83 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by oink View Post

No, not at all.

The boy deliberately trespassed into an environment designed to kill the unprepared and the ignorant.
To do so willingly, while ignoring the explicit warnings of experts (ie, the local in the pickup who dropped him off at the end of the road), doesn't generate a lot of sympathy...or admiration.
Nearly everything that happened after that compounded the peril he was in...not enough food, improper footware, the disregard to the danger of getting wet, not eating some of the wildlife, and on and on.

Agreed, his character was not particularly worthy of sympathy or admiration.

But, I did understand how the circumstances of his life led him to such choices and I think his story is worth telling, at the very least as a precautionary tale to others considering such foolishness.
post #84 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hicks View Post

Agreed, his character was not particularly worthy of sympathy or admiration.

But, I did understand how the circumstances of his life led him to such choices and I think his story is worth telling, at the very least as a precautionary tale to others considering such foolishness.

Can't really argue that....
post #85 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Temple View Post

That Romeo dude was a dumbass...

I agree. More mistakes have been made and more foolish acts have been committed by more people throughout the history of time due to mistaking the mating instinct/drive for "love" than from any other single cause.
post #86 of 108
Strangely, though, the world (at least western culture) is full of people who will romanticize this kind character and his behavior, and find ways to raise it to the public attention for that purpose. I don't think Mr. Penn's intention was to make a "this is not the way to do it" survival film. Peculiar and tragic, yes. Worthy of romanticizing? Not IMHO
post #87 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hicks View Post

Gotcha, so in order to enjoy a movie the protagonist must be "intelligent" and make decisions that do not end up in tragedy.

Using that vague criteria we could say that many of the works of Shakespeare are not worth our time.

Good point. Or look at more modern stories / movies, what about The Perfect Storm? What about the skipper of the Andrea Gail? Didn't what happened to him happen because of bad decisions on his part?
post #88 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hicks View Post

I find it funny that some folks seem to think that in order to enjoy a movie the protagonist must make choices and have beliefs that are in line with their own. I suppose relating to and considering other points of view just isn't for everyone.

You've hit the nail on the head here. Some people really just can't stand the idea of a story about someone who does something that they wouldn't do in the same circumstances.

As presented in this movie, Christopher McCandless is a very flawed character. Penn doesn't shy away from depicting that. The kid is naive. He makes bad decisions. He follows through on a dangerous course of action even though he should have known better, and he doesn't realize the mistake until it's too late to save himself. That's what makes the story a tragedy, as in the classical form that's been used as the basis of drama ever since the ancient Greeks.

Did Oedipus make good decisions? How about Shakespeare's Hamlet or MacBeth? What ginormous pieces of crap those stories were, right?

This exact dramatic form has been in active use for literally thousands of years, and yet some people still seem to be utterly incapable of recognizing or understanding it. It boggles the mind...
post #89 of 108
Quote:
...and yet some people still seem to be utterly incapable of recognizing or understanding it.

Or maybe just not entertained by it?
post #90 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Grubert View Post

Good point. Or look at more modern stories / movies, what about The Perfect Storm? What about the skipper of the Andrea Gail? Didn't what happened to him happen because of bad decisions on his part?

Well, according to the movie, it was more of a group decision then the Captain's alone though he had a lion share in it for sure. Having said that making a mistake or being "stupid" is not the same IMO.
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