Right before he merged with the universe in 1992 after spending 100 days alone in an abandoned school bus in the Alaskan wilderness, adventurer and spiritual seeker Christopher McCandless (memorably played by Emile Hirsch) wrote in his journal: "Happiness real when shared." In writer-director Sean Penn's captivatingly deep-dish character study, McCandless comes to that realization the hard way, but honestly -- as a young man who literally walks away from the career fast-track to wander the deserts, river valleys, and mountaintops of the West, armed with his Dostoevsky, Thoreau, and Jack London. Penn, who doesn't appear in the film, provides his usual sure touch with actors -- Catherine Keener, Vince Vaughn, Brian Dierker, Kristen Stewart, and Hal Holbrook play the people "Alex Supertramp" meets on the road knit together brilliantly with a scenario that could only be described as transcendent. Adapted from the book by Jon Krakauer.
Director: Sean Penn
Writer: Jon Krakauer and Sean Penn
Producer: Sean Penn, Art Linson and Bill Pohlan
Cast: Emile Hirsch, Marcia Gay Harden, William Hurt, Jena Malone, Brian Dierker, Catherine Keener, Vince Vaughn, Kristen Stewart, Hal Holbrook and Jim Gallien