WILD (15)

WILD (15)

Run time: 115mins

Director: Jean-Marc Vallée

Cast: Reese Witherspoon, Michiel Huisman, Gaby Hoffmann, Laura Dern

Synopsis: The true-life story of Cheryl Strayed, who in her mid-twenties decided to walk the 1,100 mile Pacific Crest trail alone, in an effort to confront her personal demons.

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This chronicle of one woman’s solo hike the length of America to find herself – from Director Jean-Marc Vallée (Dallas Buyers Club) with a script from Nick Hornby – is more or less a one- woman film with a strong performance from Reese Witherspoon who has been Oscar nominated.  Adapted from the best-selling memoir Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail  from Cheryl Strayed (she changed her name as a kind of metaphor) who was actively involved in producing, co-scripting and getting Witherspoon on-board – the film has stunning cinematography from Yves Bélanger.

It is a touching and inspiring story of a woman who, with no experience, rashly embarks on her solo hike of over a thousand miles as a way of healing her grief over her mother’s death and her broken marriage.  This journey against all odds – with poor footwear, overloaded rucksack, inadequate cooking utensils, natural and human hazards – enables her to lighten her metaphorical and actual loads and ultimately to heal herself.

Despite Stray’s flaws, Witherspoon manages to make her a likeable person whom we root for all the way.  She is supported by strong cameos from Laura Dern in flashback as her beloved mother and Michiel Huisman as a fellow traveller Jonathan.  The real Cheryl Strayed makes a brief appearance and her daughter plays the young Cheryl.

Images courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox

WILD_FOX_4135    Laura Dern as "Bobbi" in WILD.