With the dissolution of her marriage and the death of her mother, Cheryl Strayed has lost all hope. After years of reckless, destructive behavior, she makes a rash decision. With absolutely no experience, driven only by sheer determination, Cheryl hikes more than a thousand miles of the Pacific Crest Trail, alone. WILD powerf...more
With the dissolution of her marriage and the death of her mother, Cheryl Strayed has lost all hope. After years of reckless, destructive behavior, she makes a rash decision. With absolutely no experience, driven only by sheer determination, Cheryl hikes more than a thousand miles of the Pacific Crest Trail, alone. WILD powerfully captures the terrors and pleasures of one young woman forging ahead against all odds on a journey that maddens, strengthens, and ultimately heals her. less
Wild is the story of introspection, while dealing with grief through an arduous, torturous hike along the famous Pacific Crest Trail. Cheryl lost her mother to a tumor, had an abusive father, her mother ran away from carrying both her babies, a seven year old relationship that was broken on amicable terms in search of greener pastures! It is based on Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed (Reese Witherspoon, who is also one of the producers). Nick Hornby's screenplay focuses on intensity, unlike his previous two movies, High Fidelity and the mildly entertaining About a Boy.
Jean-Marc Vallee of Dallas Buyers' Club fame is thankfully pragmatic when it comes to mixing her flashback into the tough hike she undertakes to Bridge of Gods from Minneapolis. He uses short, crisp flashbacks to tell the audience about her past, her heroine addiction, about the time she would sleep with random men, about the time, she would deal with her mother's death by burying it inside, about the way she never became the woman her mother brought her up to become, until the hike, through vast expanses of wilderness, starving sometimes, walking through aching feet, with sores caused by smaller sized boots, accepting kindnesses from random people she would meet during the hike. Eventually, she does become someone better, someone different. Or so we are told. Here lies the problem.
Through most part of the movie, we are not privy to a lot of her thoughts, except that she is into self-help quotes from legends and owns a Bob Marley t-shirt. We know, a scary rattlesnake or 9 days of not eating any warm food doesn't deter her from her path. We know she would walk through snow, when seasoned hikers give up. We know she is doing all that in spite of being afraid, constantly of men, bad men. Yet, we rarely come across that woman who is strong enough inside to go through all this. We rarely see that spirit or gusto on Reese's blank, placid face. We rarely can feel or relate to what she is going through. Probably that is how Reese or the director wanted to portray the story. But, to anyone who has seen what a similar movie, Into the Wild, could do to your psyche, Wild seems just a couchworthy offering that doesn't stir you up enough, or at least as much as you expect from themes such as these. Yves Belanger gets us some stunning landscape shots and floods us with a lot of lights and meaningful bokehs. The OST of the movie is impressive too. Yet, you'll not walk away from the movie with more than a few thoughts, questions or emotions. A kid singing to her, one of his favorite rhymes around grief is about the most touching moment of this movie, a moment that is followed by her dropping on her knees and crying and you are still left untouched. It just doesn't reach out to you and that is where Wild lost a bit of its soul in the wilderness!