18 Movies Like Into the Wild to Watch

Movies Like Into the Wild

Below is a list of amazing movies like Into the Wild. They will pull at your heart and encourage you to look for purpose in life.

One of those movies that, when you see it only once, changes you forever is Into the Wild. 

This is the story of a little boy named Christopher McCandless who decides to leave his home and all he knows to explore the outside world and learn more about life.

He encounters many people along the road who, like him, are drifting through life without any real direction. 

Chris swims against that same life’s wave to overcome it. Several movies like Into the Wild, are available to stream on Netflix, Hulu, or Amazon Prime.

1. Wild (2014)

  • Director: Jean-Marc Vallée
  • Cast: Reese Witherspoon, Laura Dern, Thomas Sadoski, Keene McRae, Michiel Huisman, W. Earl Brown, Gaby Hoffmann, and Kevin Rankin
  • IMDb rating: 7.1/10

Cheryl must choose to be left by her ex-husband at a point of no return.

Whether to keep abusing drugs, engaging in anonymous sex, and engaging in irresponsible behavior to dull the pain of her isolation and her mother’s passing. 

Cheryl sets out on a lone walk to escape her depressing way of life.

She must reach her lowest point while traveling 1,100 miles alone and encountering many people before beginning her upward journey toward healing her mind and body.

2. The Way (2010)

  • Director: Emilio Estevez
  • Cast: Martin Sheen, Emilio Estevez, Deborah Kara Unger, Yorick van Wageningen, James Nesbitt,Romy Baskerville, and Renée Estevez
  • IMDb rating: 7.3/10

If you’ve read Paulo Coelho’s best-selling book “The Pilgrimage,” you already have a sense of the power the Camino Santiago can have in your life. 

The Way, a comedy and drama not based on the aforementioned book, revolves around this well-known route to self-discovery and how it impacts the life of an American doctor. 

Constrained by his ordinary and boring existence, Tom has traveled to Spain to retrieve his son’s remains while traveling the road of Saint James.

Tom sets off on the pilgrimage to fulfill his son’s last request. 

He doesn’t anticipate that his journey will become the basis for a bildungsroman as he meets many other people searching for their true calling.

This is one of the amazing movies like Into the Wild.

3. The Way Back (2010)

  • Director: Peter Weir
  • Cast: Jim Sturgess, Ed Harris, Colin Farrell, Dragos Bucur, Alexandru Potocean, Saoirse Ronan, and Mark Strong
  • IMDb rating: 7.3/10

This is a story of perseverance through the worst weather. A group of survivors must fight to survive against all obstacles as they flee communist Russia through the Siberian Gulag in 1941, during the height of World War II. 

They must contend with some of the hardest environmental circumstances while balancing moral and ethical dilemmas.

The survivors are given “The Way Back” to follow. Their patience and endurance will be tested as they travel down that route and arrive at their destination.

4. Monos (2019)

  • Director: Alejandro Landes
  • Cast: Sofia Buenaventura, Julián Giraldo, Karen Quintero, Laura Castrillón, Deiby Rueda, Paul Cubides, and Sneider Castro
  • IMDb rating: 6.9/10

Colombia submitted this wild action-thriller as a nomination for the 2020 Academy Awards.

The code name for a group of teenagers keeping an American prisoner in a remote bunker is “Monos,” which means monkeys. 

Except for the odd visit from their supervisor, they are allowed to build relationships, engage in drug use, engage in alcohol consumption, and use psychedelic mushrooms.

One day, in addition to the captive, they are given custody of Shakira, a milk cow. 

One of the Monos inadvertently murders Shakira at a party, setting off a chain of events that leads them deep into the bush and despair.

Monos is more of a character study than an action movie. It is undoubtedly one of the best movies like Into the Wild.

5. Captain Fantastic (2016)

  • Director: Matt Ross
  • Cast: Viggo Mortensen, George MacKay, Samantha Isler, Annalise Basso, Nicholas Hamilton, Shree Crooks, and Charlie Shotwell
  • IMDb rating: 7.8/10

Viggo Mortensen’s character, Ben Cash, a former activist, and his wife Leslie leave modern materialism behind to raise their six children in the wilderness of the Pacific Northwest. 

They taught them literature, music, and philosophy while instructing them how to produce and kill their food and live in the wilderness through workouts similar to boot camp. 

They celebrate Noam Chomsky’s birthday rather than Christmas.

However, one day, a phone call shakes up this odd family’s existence, forcing them to leave their adventurous life behind and reintegrate into American society.

The movie, directed by Matt Ross, takes a compelling look at alternative lifestyles, the consequences of modern technology, and the qualities of effective parenting. 

As the aged father, Viggo Mortensen is just great, and he was rightfully nominated for both a Golden Globe and an Oscar Award for Best Actor.

The cast of “Children,” including George MacKay, also produces outstanding performances. 

Captain Fantastic challenges the audience to judge whether Ben Cash is the world’s best or worst parent and does it in an emotionally raw, thought-provoking, and amusing way. This is one of the best movies like Into the Wild.

6. The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (2013)

  • Director: Ben Stiller
  • Cast: Ben Stiller, Kristen Wiig, Jon Daly, Kathryn Hahn, Terence Bernie Hines, Adam Scott, and Paul Fitzgerald
  • IMDb rating: 7.3/10

Walter Mitty is an introvert who is always preoccupied with his thoughts and unable to get the bravery to engage others in conversation.

His creative imagination regularly transports him to the country of his dreams to return him to where he first started. 

When a significant image goes missing from his watch, he is forced to journey through Greenland, England, the Middle East, and other places to get to where he is meant to be. 

This is one of the movies like Into the Wild that explains how the outbursts of your weird imagination may become what makes you special rather than what is wrong with you.

7. Incendies (2010)

  • Director: Denis Villeneuve
  • Cast: Lubna Azabal, Mélissa Désormeaux-Poulin, Maxim Gaudette, Mustafa Kamel, Hussein Sami, Rémy Girard, and Dominique Briand
  • IMDb rating: 8.3/10

Denis Villeneuve, who wrote and directed this French-Canadian slow-burner, will capture you with one of the greatest movie beginnings ever. Also, its spectacular ending will leave you speechless. 

After their mother unexpectedly passes away in Montreal, the twins Jeanne and Simon must each go to an unnamed Middle Eastern nation to deliver letters to relatives they had no idea they had to carry out their mother’s final wish.

The twins’ search into their horrific family history exposes them to themselves and the brutality of war in ways they could never have anticipated. 

A sequence of flashbacks describing the story of their mother, Nawal Marwan, disrupts their struggle and leads them to learn a disturbing secret. 

This melodramatic war thriller, based on Wajdi Mouawad’s 2003 play of the same name, examines how tragedies influence families even decades after the battles that caused them.

8. Gravity (2013)

  • Director: Alfonso Cuarón
  • Cast: Sandra Bullock, George Clooney, Ed Harris, Orto Ignatiussen, Phaldut Sharma, Amy Warren, and Basher Savage
  • IMDb rating: 7.7/10

Compared to being lost in space, getting lost in the wild is easy. While less common, the latter scenario is at least a hundred times more deadly and harmful.

American astronaut Dr. Ryan Stone (Sandra Bullock) is serving on her first shuttle mission. 

She is left alone on a damaged shuttle orbiting the Earth when her shuttle is struck by space debris while doing normal maintenance. 

Ryan’s sole friend, Matt Kowalski, has died, and now she must decide whether to survive on her own or perish in the frigid wilderness where her loved ones won’t even be able to recover her body. This is among the best movies like Into the Wild.

9. Mud (2012)

  • Director: Jeff Nichols
  • Cast: Matthew McConaughey, Tye Sheridan, Jacob Lofland, Sam Shepard, Reese Witherspoon, Ray McKinnon, and Sarah Paulson
  • IMDb rating: 7.4/10

Wait till you watch this movie if you thought Dallas Buyers Club, Interstellar, or True Detective represented the best of Matthew McConaughey’s acting abilities. 

Mud is one of the amazing movies like Into the Wild, with a beautiful story of love, sorrow, and personal development. It was written and directed by Jeff Nichols and is set in the American South. 

Two children, Ellis and Neckbone, stumble upon the elusive Mud, a guy on the run sought for murder.

The children are first frightened by his mysterious character, but they ultimately want to assist and defend him from those who are after him. 

The movie, which ultimately tells a love story, draws inspiration from American adventure stories and the South’s oppressive humidity to explore a human situation through children’s eyes. Mud is intriguing, unsettling, sad, and rather lovely. 

10. The Revenant (2015)

  • Director: Alejandro G. Iñárritu
  • Cast: Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hardy, Will Poulter, Domhnall Gleeson, Forrest Goodluck, Paul Anderson, and Kristoffer Joner
  • IMDb rating: 8.0/10

The Revenant is among the amazing movies like Into the Wild. John Fitzgerald, his main rival, has abandoned Hugh Glass.

Glass is standing on the threshold of Hell and almost dies after being attacked by a bear in a wide area covered in ice. 

However, he rejects Thanatos again to seek revenge on the person who deceived him and his innocent son. 

This is the story of a man who retrieved himself from the tomb, battling not only his own body, which was ready to give up at any moment but also one of the harshest environments known to man. 

In this movie, Leonardo DiCaprio gave a superb performance for which he finally received the Oscar he so well earned after all these years.

11. Room (2015)

  • Director: Lenny Abrahamson
  • Cast: Brie Larson, Jacob Tremblay, Sean Bridgers, Wendy Crewson, Sandy McMaster, Matt Gordon, and Amanda Brugel
  • IMDb rating: 8.1/10

Since birth, Jack has shared a room with his devoted mother, Joy (Brie Larson), and is a curious and inquisitive five-year-old.

Joy wants nothing more than to provide his son with a life that is as normal as possible after raising his only child in captivity for all these years. 

Joy indulges Jack’s constant probing and all of his questions with the help of her creative imagination and euphemisms.

Yet, as Jack becomes restless, they both make a dangerous but essential effort to escape their captivity.

12. 127 Hours (2010)

  • Director: Danny Boyle
  • Cast: James Franco, Amber Tamblyn, Kate Mara, Sean Bott, Koleman Stinger, Treat Williams, and John Lawrence
  • IMDb rating: 7.5/10

This is 127 hours, a story of tenacious survival. This movie demonstrates how hard it may be to survive when you know you are slowly dying. It is based on the true-life story of Aron Ralston. 

Ryan is forced to choose between forcing himself out of telling his unbelievable story or choosing to die slowly and painfully distant from his loved ones.

He has to make these decisions while trapped in an isolated canyon between two stone walls with his right hand stuck in a rock. 

This is one of the best movies like Into the Wild, which describes what happens to a man’s character and thought process when he encounters solitude.

13. Cast Away (2000)

  • Director: Robert Zemeckis
  • Cast: Tom Hanks, Helen Hunt, Paul Sanchez, Lari White, Leonid Citer, David Allen Brooks, and Yelena Popovic
  • IMDb rating: 7.3/10

FedEx executive Chuck Noland (Tom Hanks), stranded on a remote island after an aircraft crash, is forced to fight an uphill battle.

The lonely guy, steadily losing his patience, must fight the monsters within while enduring physical fatigue on a barren island. 

Castaway is a stunning and thought-provoking movie that explains why a man needs a human touch to survive and how he can go insane if left alone. 

The FedEx delivery man must complete his last delivery while battling the elements and an open ocean to return home to his family and loved ones.

14. The Great Beauty (2013)

  • Director: Paolo Sorrentino
  • Cast: Toni Servillo, Carlo Verdone, Sabrina Ferilli, Carlo Buccirosso, Iaia Forte, Pamela Villoresi, and Galatea Ranzi
  • IMDb rating: 7.7/10

This Italian star director Paolo Sorrentino’s movie, originally titled La Grande Bellezza, is so immersed in lush, opulent cinematography that it sometimes verges on sensory overload. 

It is essentially a tragicomedy that examines and celebrates the hedonism and depravity of its protagonist, the lively and modern Roman empire socialite Jep Gambardella. 

Gambardella eventually chooses to become Rome’s self-declared “lord of high life” rather than refining the craft of writing.

At turn 65, he receives a shock that forever changes him, leading him to see beyond the celebrations and the clubs to his hometown’s magnificent beauty, the eternal city. 

In this sense, The Great Beauty serves as Sorrentino’s love letter to Rome and reflects on art, regret, and pleasure. This is undoubtedly one of the best movies like Into the Wild.

15. Life of Pi (2012)

  • Director: Ang Lee
  • Cast: Suraj Sharma, Irrfan Khan, Adil Hussain, Tabu, Ayush Tandon, Gautam Belur, and Ayaan Khan
  • IMDb rating: 7.9/10

Life of Pi, an outstanding coming-of-age and survival movie featuring Irrfan Khan, is a story that may either be true or fictitious, depending on whether or not you can accept the unbelievable. 

Pi Patel was shipwrecked from India to Canada, losing every family member to the rough seas.

He continues to be in a lifeboat with Richard Parker, a Royal Bengal tiger, an orangutan, and a hyena. 

Pi will need more than survival skills to endure this tribulation of fate as he struggles to survive in the ruthless water while battling and training the hungry tiger intent on tearing him to pieces.

16. The Spectacular Now (2013)

  • Director: James Ponsoldt
  • Cast: Miles Teller, Shailene Woodley, Kyle Chandler, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Brie Larson, Masam Holden, and Dayo Okeniyi
  • IMDb rating: 7.1/10

Everyone enjoys a good coming-of-age story, but they are not without their flaws.

Their young protagonists are often excessively flawless or incompetent cartoon characters. This is where The Spectacular Now accomplishes a spectacular feat. 

The movie stars Miles Teller as Sutter Keely, a lovely but little lost high school senior who parties a lot.

After a long night, he awakens on a strange lawn where Shailene Woodley’s character Aimee wakes him up. 

Her acting is as outstanding as the complexity of the characters in this movie.

What begins as a rebound relationship for Keely develops into something more as his problems are made clearer to the viewers, Aimee, and his caring teacher. 

This movie shows a great deal of respect for its people and the journeys they have to go on. It is a sensitive drama with remarkably real-life acting.

17. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly (2007)

  • Director: Julian Schnabel
  • Cast: Mathieu Amalric, Emmanuelle Seigner, Marie-Josée Croze, Anne Consigny, Patrick Chesnais, Niels ArestrupOlatz, and López Garmendia
  • IMDb rating: 8.0/10

The infamous locked-in syndrome has put magazine editor Jean-Do unconscious after a severe stroke. His life seems to have ended since he cannot talk or move a single muscle. 

With the ability to hear and feel everything around him, Jean decides to go on and start again in life.

Watch as this dramatic narrative comes to life, demonstrating why you should never accept defeat. 

It’s one of the best movies like Into the Wild, that tells you about basic survival and rediscovering your spirit.

18. The Motorcycle Diaries (2004)

  • Director: Walter Salles
  • Cast: Gael García Bernal, Rodrigo de la Serna, Mía Maestro, Mercedes Morán, Jean Pierre Noher, Lucas Oro, and Marina Glezer
  • IMDb rating: 7.7/10

Several people claim to know Ernesto “Fuser” Guevara, also known as Che Guevara, especially the young ones wearing hippie t-shirts with his image. 

Che Guevera, a revolutionary from Bolivia, is renowned for supporting Fidel Castro’s government and giving his life to defend his country’s freedom.

In the movie, the legendary Che Guevara is shown as a young medical student exploring the countries of South America on a whim.

Che ultimately decides to fight for the cause of the South American people rather than just having fun after seeing their true difficulties.

This movie, which tells the story of an epic revolutionary, is essential for young people looking for their life’s purpose. This is undoubtedly one of the best movies like Into the Wild.

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