Il Diario di Tinton

{2008-03-12}   Into The Wild (movie)

This movie was suggested by Francesco Scarselli and Bertini, Zizu and somebody else, and I finally got to see it on a Delta flight from Milan to Atlanta, march 7th 2008.


The story talks about a recently graduated young man, who decides to live a period of his life away from the city, in nature. He gets rid of all his monetary wealth and ID’s, and tries to establish a new identity, by changing his name into Alexander Supertramp.

He hitch hikes through the united states, hops on trains, works in farms, all ultimately to prepare for his final goal, which is to go live in Alaska, alone.

During his entire journey, he never gets in touch with the family which is suffering a lot.

In Alaska, he finds an abandoned bus, manages to live in it for about 3 months, through mistakes and learning until he commits the small but lethal mistake of confusing an poisonous plant with an edible one. The mistake was tiny because he was still learning to identify the plants, making use of a book, and switched to the wrong page.

He is found by hunters only 2 weeks after his death.

Tools/effects used

The director makes wide use of time jumping: he starts towards the end of the movie, then jumps back and forth, until he reaches the charachter’s death. At which point he makes use of an original photograph of the original real charachter both to show the story is real, and to show the phisical similarity between charachter and real person.

Another interesting tool used by Sean Penn was the voice of the narrator, being his sister, descrbing how, as time went by without any news from him, the parents initial anger, transforms into fear and desperation. The tone of her voice is very steady, equanimous, mellow, although she talks about very strong sensations. This was very effective in portraying the families point of view during his adventures.


I was very impressed by the movie, and I got very involved, lets say. Especially by the “Magic Bus” part, when he reaches Alaska. I keep wondering if its the movie ment to create that effect, or if its me, and my relation with the charachter.

The movie made me feel like what I am doing (living in the woods) is the right thing, even though it empasizes how easy it is to die: all you need is a tiny mistake, just flipping to the wrong page, and you’re dead. But the charachter is escaping from human interaction and help. He wants to huff it alone, it seems. I feel like the charachter is interested in total isolation. My situation is very different: I am well aware of my need of others to survive. I seek the help of others (or rather, I am starting to đŸ™‚ by trying to establish contacts with locals, which is something the Christopher (the main charachter) avoids.

In addition, I value very much staying in the same place for a long time, whereas Christopher seems to value a lot travelling, moving from one place to the next. He believes that staying in the same place will get you make you sit, and turn off your brain, whereas while travelling, one is constantly exposed to novelty. While the appareant truth of this statement is evident, I believe that it is not what one does that keeps them alive, but how they do it. In other words, one can be a world traveller, but became so used to it, that one travels through countries, cultures, languages, landscapes, without even noticing anything, and without being stimulated in any way. Similarily, one can live ones entire life in a small town, yet be so involved with social and agricultural activities to constantly pick up the novelty of the surprises that life has to give us every day.

Actually, I believe that, rather than moving and doing to be stimulated, it is easier to maintain the mind active without travelling, and by living in a more peaceful environment. Maybe. Or maybe at this point of my life. In reality, both forms of life are great have lots to offer. A mixture of the two, by exhausting one form and switching before entering larva state, might be the ideal. As long as one is active, no use changing! Just like as long as the computer works, don’t upgrade!


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