Into the Wild
Director Sean Penn makes his first masterpiece with this movie based on the true story of Chris McCandless (Emile Hirsch), a well-to-do college graduate who set out on a personal voyage that ended with tragic results in the Alaskan bush. Hirsch is a revelation as McCandless, a passionate young man who had some good intentions, coupled with some poor execution of those intentions. Penn has shot shockingly beautiful visuals for this film, and set them to a terrific soundtrack by Eddie Vedder, Hal Holbrook delivers one of the year’s better supporting performances as a lonely man who befriends Chris before his Alaskan journey. While the events in the film are tragic, Penn still manages a film that is uplifting, thanks in large part to the Hirsch performance. Based on the book by John Krakauer, this should be a contender in multiple categories for Oscars this year.