“Into the Wild” explores the great potentials that lie within discoveries- as they are invariably filtered through an individual’s own desires

“Into the Wild” explores the great potentials that lie within discoveries- as they are invariably filtered through an individual’s own desires, needs and agendas. Christopher McCandless is initially wounded from his parents materialistic nature that is portrayed from flashbacks, particularly the scene of his parents kissing blissfully in their new Cadillac – symbolic of material wealth – which is cross cut with chaotic, cropped shots of domestic violence and abuse. The superficiality of his parents lives drive McCandless to depart from the materialistic world and fundamentally also society. Penn’s use of hyper saturated cinematography of landscapes, sunrises, and sunsets, shot across wide angle vistas to inspire the audience into a sense of awe and freedom. The use of iconic, slow motion shots of Christopher in the wilderness, across landscapes of forests, rivers, deserts and snow further emphasis the sense of absolute liberation that heals the trauma of his unhappy, superficial family.