“Into the Wild”— A Must-Watch Movie That Will Change Your Perspective

Sometimes you come across a movie that changes your perspective on life, and it was the movie, Into the Wild, that did that for me.

Sometimes the modern stressors of society can become so great that they leave you questioning what to do with your life. Nowadays, we’re bombarded with cars, clothing, careers, internet ads, traffic, texts, strangers, lovers, the 50 different types of bread in the supermarket aisle, and so much more. Maybe all these options are too much for the human mind to grasp. So, in the midst of an abundance of, perhaps unnecessary, societal and material things, one freezes, and maybe even goes off into the wilderness where we’re free from perceived ideocracy in the infatuation of so-called things. I’ve thought of leaving society for the peace and serenity that extends from nature but never had the courage to do so. The movie Into the Wild is based on one man who did.

The movie is based on the true story of Christopher McCandless. Christopher McCandless was a privileged child who graduated from Emory University as a top student and athlete. The first scene of the movie begins with Chris refusing his parents’ gift of a newer and much nicer car to replace his older car, that according to Chris, “still works perfectly fine.” This scene really surprised me because if I was given a new car, I’d take it without hesitating, but Christopher teaches us that we don’t need more things to be happy, we need experiences to be happy.

He abandoned all possessions, gave his $24,000 of life savings to charity, and hitchhiked across the Northern American border from South Dakota to Alaska. This sounds quite insane, but through watching Christopher’s journey across America, you start to realize that you don’t always need to follow the path. It seems to be that we all have a path we believe we must follow; go to college, get the degree, and then go straight to work. Despite this, Christopher taught me that it’s okay to steer away from that path every once in a while and get lost in a different country, or just simply explore your home city. There ultimately is no path or boundaries on what you can do; you decide for yourself.

Most people watching the movie are probably dumbstruck as to how he left all his materials and education behind because those are the very two things that tend to mark success in our community. Although Chris wasn’t searching for success, he was searching for something he didn’t know of yet. He made this journey alone, but along the way he would come to make friends along the way. At the end of his journey, when he found himself alone again, he realized what it was he was searching for—love. Not love in the romantic sense, but love for the strangers that open the door for you, love for that girl you sit next to in class, love for your professor who taught you things you’ll never forget.

There comes a time in your life when you begin to question your worth and reason for living on this planet. Is there even a reason? Am I doing the right things? Especially in our world with so many options, material objects, and career paths, how do you know where to go? I believe the overwhelming abundance of things, and perhaps the cookie-cutter way society treats human beings of different personalities and ways of learning can sometimes push people to the brink of insanity. So, maybe Chris McCandless wasn’t crazy… maybe Chris McCandless was just looking for a way to free himself for a little while.

Surviving college is a learning process. Things won’t always go to plan or follow the “path” per se, but things will always work out in the end, especially when there is love and people all around you.


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