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"INTO THE WILD"
(2007) (Emile Hirsch, Catherine Keener) (R)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
Heavy Heavy Heavy Moderate Moderate
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Moderate None None Minor Extreme
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
Extreme Minor Heavy Moderate Moderate


QUICK TAKE:
Drama: Upon graduating from college, a young man drops out of society, and meets various interesting people as he hits the road, preparing himself for an extended stay in the Alaskan wilderness.
PLOT:
It's 1992 and college graduate Christopher McCandless (EMILE HIRSCH) has achieved his life goal of arriving and then living by himself in the Alaskan wilderness. Setting up camp in an abandoned bus, he tries to survive there, all while reflecting on the journey that led to that point.

Two years earlier, he's a graduate of Emory University, adored by his younger teen sister Carine (JENA MALONE). Yet, his idealism clashes with his conservative father, Walt (WILLIAM HURT) whose marriage to Billie (MARCIA GAY HARDEN) is on shaky ground.

Disillusioned with who and what he's supposed to be, Chris simply drops out from society, destroying all forms of identification and adopting the name Alexander Supertramp. He then sets out across the country, taking odd jobs here and there -- such as working for farmer and satellite receiver box bootlegger Wayne (VINCE VAUGHN) -- while meeting an array of interesting people, such as aged hippies Rainey (BRIAN DIERKER) and Jan (CATHERINE KEENER) who briefly and unofficially adopt him.

He later crosses paths with them again, which is when he meets young singer Tracy (KRISTEN STEWART) who takes an instant liking to him. Yet, he has no intent on settling down in one place, meaning after he spends some time with her and then widower Ron Franz (HAL HOLBROOK), he sets off once again, intent on making it to Alaska, and living a life that's solely his.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
Older teens seem the most likely, especially if they're fans of someone in the cast, or director Sean Penn.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: R
For language and some nudity.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • EMILE HIRSCH plays a college graduate who decides to drop out of society, travel across the country, and eventually settle in the Alaskan wilderness to live by himself. He uses strong profanity and drinks.
  • JENA MALONE plays his younger teen sister who narrates in voice over what happened to him.
  • WILLIAM HURT plays their conservative father who's abusive to their mother, but softens his approach due to their shared grief and worry about what happened to their son.
  • MARCIA GAY HARDEN plays his wife who's stuck in an unhappy marriage, drinks some, and similarly worries about Chris.
  • CATHERINE KEENER plays a middle-aged hippie who unofficially and only briefly "adopts" Chris, befriends and gives him advice. She has sex with Rainey and smokes a joint.
  • BRIAN DIERKER plays her hippie partner, who uses strong profanity, has sex with her, and similarly smokes pot.
  • VINCE VAUGHN plays a farmer who briefly employs Chris, drinks, briefly smokes, and illegally sells satellite receiver boxes.
  • KRISTEN STEWART plays the 16-year-old daughter of hippies and an aspiring singer who wants to have sex with Chris.
  • HAL HOLBROOK plays an older man who lost his wife and child to a drunk driver in the past, and now befriends Chris before the last part of his journey.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    Curious if this title is entertaining, any good, and/or has any artistic merit?
    Then read OUR TAKE of this film.


    (Note: The "Our Take" review of this title examines the film's artistic merits and does not take into account any of the possibly objectionable material listed below).


    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    The following is a brief summary of the content found in this R-rated drama. Profanity consists of at least 13 "f" words, while other expletives and colorful phrases are also uttered. Some sexually related dialogue is present, as is brief footage or just sounds of sexual encounters, while a teen girl wants to have sex with the college graduate, but he turns her down due to her age. Nonsexual nudity, including male and female full frontal, also occurs.

    Violence includes a man beating another with bloody results (while the gutting of hunted animals for food is also bloody/gory), and a husband briefly roughs up his wife. Those scenes and some moments of potential peril might be unsettling for some viewers. Some scatological material is present, as are various bad attitudes and tense family material (involving a strained marriage as well as worry about the disappearance of a son in his early twenties).

    There's brief smoking, more drinking, and some drug use (pot), while that and some other behavior (including dropping out of society) might be enticing for some kids to imitate.

    Should you still be concerned about the film's appropriateness for yourself or anyone else in your home, you may want to look more closely at our detailed listings for more specific information regarding the film's content.

    For those prone to visually induced motion sickness, varying amounts of handheld camerawork (sometimes a lot) occur in the film, as does some spin around footage.


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • Miscellaneous people drink in a restaurant.
  • Rainey has a beer.
  • Jan smokes a joint.
  • Wayne and others drink.
  • A miscellaneous person has beer.
  • Miscellaneous people drink in a bar.
  • We see miscellaneous drinking.
  • We see a flashback to Chris' parents verbally fighting. She's drinking, and he grabs and throws her around, all in front of their kids.
  • We see miscellaneous drinking.
  • Rainey has a joint and then, later, a beer.
  • Rainey has a joint.
  • About some nudists, Ron refers to them as dope smokers.
  • Ron mentions that a drunk driver killed his wife and child in the past. He then mentions that he went to the whiskey, hard.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • We hear a gunshot and then see Chris eating a small, charred and de-furred animal on a spit.
  • A man gives advice to Chris about hunting and the need to work on the meat right away, before the flies arrive and start "sh*tting" out larva and maggots.
  • We hear the sound of Wayne urinating.
  • Chris' face and neck are bloody after being beaten.
  • We see Chris' urine stream as he relieves himself.
  • We see Chris cutting into some animals he's killed for food (including cutting off feathers and such).
  • Chris shoots a big elk, and we then see him cutting up the carcass, removing organs, and then carrying the severed head (all shown in graphic detail, with bloody/gory results). We later see more cutting into the carcass, and Chris then tries to store the meat, but then finds that it's infested with maggots.
  • We see wolves feeding on a carcass.
  • Chris vomits.
  • We see dirt, blood, and/or excrement down Chris' leg.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Chris doesn't tell his family where he's going, thus leaving them to worry about his fate.
  • Miscellaneous people are a bit too raucous for the type of restaurant they're in.
  • Chris doesn't get along with his parents, and turns down their graduation gift offer of giving him a new car.
  • Wayne is arrested for selling illegal satellite receiver boxes.
  • There's talk that Walt cheated on his first wife with Billie in the past, thus making Carine and Chris their "bastard children."
  • Chris shoots the rapids despite having no experience, or a permit to do so.
  • Chris runs and jumps into a moving train (as a means of free transport).
  • We see a flashback to Chris' parents verbally fighting. She's drinking, and he grabs and throws her around, all in front of their kids.
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • Chris nearly shoots an elk-type animal, but stops when he sees it's a relatively new mother.
  • Chris sleeps in his car that's parked in the desert at night when a flash flood suddenly hits it (a brief scene, and he's okay).
  • A man pulls Chris from an open train car and repeatedly strikes him with a club or something similar, while also kicking him (all as a barking dog is nearby). Chris is then bloody from that.
  • Chris decides to leave the relative safety of his wilderness bus and try to make it to civilization. Yet, he ends up falling into a raging river and barely holds onto the bank to save himself.
  • For those scared of such animals, we see a tarantula as well as a rattlesnake.
  • Ron nearly falls while climbing up a steep, craggy hill.
  • Chris has an adverse reaction to eating poisonous plants (he then reads that they stop digestion and thus lead to death via starvation).
  • Chris freezes outside of his bus, and we then see why: A large bear is nearby, but eventually passes by without coming at him.
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • In the scenes set in Alaska, Chris carries a rifle and occasionally uses it to hunt for food.
  • Chris shoots his gun into the air from frustration of not having anything to hunt for food.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "You're an industrious little f*cker, aren't you?" "So f*cking often," "F*ck you," "Jack f*cking LaLanne," "I'm f*cking hungry," "Holy sh*t," "In every man's heart is a Mexican mistress," "Shut up," "Are you guys crazy?" "All is not well on the hippie front," "Bastard children," "Kiss my ass," "What the hell are you running from?" and "You little pinhead."
  • Chris decides to drop out of society, and thus gets rid of all forms of I.D. (including burning his social security card) and even burns his money.
  • Chris jumps off a short cliff into a body of water.
  • Chris runs and jumps into a moving train (as a means of free transport).
  • We see miscellaneous graffiti.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • None.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • None.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • The song "King of the Road" has the lines, "I ain't got no cigarettes" and "I smoke old stogies I have found."
  • A performed song includes the use of "damn" and "kiss my ass."
  • PROFANITY
  • At least 13 "f" words, 5 "s" words, 1 slang term using male genitals ("pr*cks"), 6 hells, 3 damns, 1 ass, 2 uses of "G-damn" and 1 use each of "For God's sakes," "Jesus," "My God," "Oh my God" and "Swear to God."
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • Chris makes some sort of comment about taking male and female paper dolls and banging them together at the hips.
  • At various points in the film, we see Chris shirtless.
  • There's brief archival footage of a nude village boy (the footage is low quality, so while we can tell we're seeing his bare butt, the details aren't there).
  • We see Chris and Jan strip down to their underwear to go play in the waves.
  • There are slight playful sexual sounds from Rainey and Jan's tent, but nothing explicit.
  • We partially see Rainey shirtless.
  • An acquaintance of Wayne's states that if he wants some vagina, "Let me get it."
  • Chris meets some foreign tourists along a river, with the woman coming out of the water in a clingy shirt through which we can see her bare breasts. She then removes that wet top and is then topless in front of her male companion as well as Chris, a stranger who she hugs like that (she's in just a small bikini bottom). Later, she's still topless in front of the two men, with her companion joking that in every man's heart is a Mexican mistress (referring to Chris possibly going there).
  • Using a makeshift shower, Chris washes himself, and we see bare skin, but nothing explicit.
  • We see Chris' full frontal nudity as he floats in a river (an overhead view).
  • Jan states that she was only a few years older than Tracy when she got pregnant.
  • We see a head and shoulders shot of Jan and Rainey having sex. They're sweaty, and we see movement, but no nudity and there are no related sounds.
  • About Chris and Tracy, Rainey says the latter is about ready to mount herself onto a pole (or something close to that, meant sexually).
  • Chris goes into Tracy's trailer where he sees her on her bed in a tank-top and panties. She says her parents are gone, but he says they can't do that (sex), with her wondering why (because of her being 16).
  • Chris and Ron come across a nudist colony and they (and we) see female full frontal nudity (several women) and distant male nudity.
  • We see Chris in the wilderness with his pants rather low in the front (nothing explicit is seen, and from having lost lots of weight).
  • SMOKING
  • Wayne smokes once, as does a miscellaneous character, while another has an unlit cigar over his ear.
  • Chris mentions various things he didn't have in Alaska, including cigarettes.
  • The song "King of the Road" has the lines, "I ain't got no cigarettes" and "I smoke old stogies I have found."
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • In voice-over narration, Chris comments on his parents being a mistake for each other.
  • Chris doesn't get along with his parents, and turns down their graduation gift offer of giving him a new car.
  • Carine comments (via voice-over narration) about the daily violence in their house (meaning between their dad and mom), but adds that it was like theater. She also comments about the parents having a plan to divorce, but that it never happened (although the kids cried over that).
  • There's talk that Walt cheated on his first wife with Billie in the past, thus making Carine and Chris their "bastard children."
  • We see a flashback to Chris' parents verbally fighting. She's drinking, and he grabs and throws her around, all in front of their kids.
  • Chris imitates his parents fighting.
  • Jan states that she was only a few years older than Tracy when she got pregnant, and there's mention that her husband left her in the past. She also mentions that she hasn't heard from her son in two years.
  • Ron mentions that a drunk driver killed his wife and child in the past. He then mentions that he went to the whiskey, hard.
  • At various points in the film, we see Chris' parents worried about him and his whereabouts.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • The film's historical accuracy and/or any artistic license taken with the true story.
  • Chris' comment about wanting to kill the false being within and complete one's spiritual revolution.
  • In voice-over narration, Chris comments on his parents being a mistake for each other.
  • Chris decides to drop out of society, and thus gets rid of all forms of I.D. (including burning his social security card) and even burns his money.
  • Chris' comment that money makes people cautious.
  • Chris' comment that money and power are an illusion.
  • Chris shoots the rapids despite having no experience, or a permit to do so.
  • We hear Carine stating that the pain associated with her brother's disappearance ultimately brought their parents closer together.
  • Ron mentions that a drunk driver killed his wife and child in the past. He then mentions that he went to the whiskey, hard.
  • Chris has an adverse reaction to eating poisonous plants (he then reads that they stop digestion and thus lead to death via starvation).
  • VIOLENCE
  • Chris sleeps in his car that's parked in the desert at night when a flash flood suddenly hits it (a brief scene, and he's okay).
  • There's brief archival footage of a person hitting another with a nightstick.
  • A woman slaps a man.
  • A man pulls Chris from an open train car and repeatedly strikes him with a club or something similar, while also kicking him (all as a barking dog is nearby). Chris is then bloody from that.
  • We see a flashback to Chris' parents verbally fighting. She's drinking, and he grabs and throws her around, all in front of their kids.



  • Reviewed August 22, 2007 / Posted October 5, 2007

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