Sunday, September 28, 2008

And a White Russian to You...

You know how sometimes someone--maybe everyone?--recommends something to you, and then you think, "Meh, I'll get to it when I get to it"? That's how Into the Wild was for me: it had all the ingredients of everything that I'd like; but well, I was just NOT really in the mood for reality at the time. Thankfully, I have since moved beyond that brief phase and now I am hoovering up non-fiction books and true story film adaptations as if I've just climbed out of a time capsule and am trying to absorb as much reality as humanly possible.

Since the movie and book have both been out for eons, I won't rehash anything that has already been said: it's a great story, it'll make you think, and it will leave you awed. At least, it did for me. And yes, I am contemplating doing an "On the Set" AT feature on it just showing the beautiful Alaskan landscape (the LA mission however, not so much). Unfortunately, I doubt Gregory will let me go that for out on a limb.

After I watched the film, I happened to catch a rerun of that show Iconoclast on the Sundance channel featuring Jon Krakauer (author of the book) and Sean Penn (director and screenwriter of the movie). I know it's kind of cheesy to admit this, but I fucking love that show. Seriously, I find that show to be a inspiring and heartbreaking all at once. Inspiring because these people are just so mind-blowingly successful--creatively, emotionally, financially. And heartbreaking because they're so alienated because well, how many people do YOU know who are over the moon with their work and their life? My friend put it best: "It must be nauseating to be around someone so bloody perfect all the time. And rich. How many of these people do you think are lonely?"

Anyway. Back to the Sean Penn and Jon Krakauer. If you haven't seen it and you like this sort of thing, I strongly encourage you to check it out. It's truly a great episodes because it's so genuine. A lot of times, especially shows like Inside the Actor's Studio, you don't really get a glimpse of the kind of passion that drives a person to go to the middle of bumfuck Alaska for the sole purpose of telling a story about a 23-year-old guy who is going on his life's biggest and most tragic adventure. When the credits were scrolling up the screen, I felt a bit of...gratitude towards these two men for broadcasting this story and making it important for anyone who has or will read the book/watch the film.

In short: Read it or watch it, it's worth the time.

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