Plot – A FedEx executive undergoes a physical and emotional transformation after a crash landing on a deserted island – Cast Away.
Director – Robert Zemeckis
Released – 2000
At heart Cast Away is a classic shipwreck tale meet love story. This isn’t just a movie about fighting for survival on a deserted island with scarce resources. It’s about overcoming our limitations and perseverance. All of which means you’re in for an extremely slow-paced movie as Chuck (Hanks) experiences various highs and lows as he attempts various methods to stay alive, however, unlike most films when a slow pace could be viewed as a downside, here it fits the subject-matter perfectly, giving the story plenty of time to show all of Chuck’s successes and failures, how his willpower was pushed to the limit and how close he came to losing all hope and giving up.
The acting throughout is outstanding, especially for Tom Hanks. As the only face on-screen for most of the movie, his performance needed to be perfect, and it was. Keeping you glued to the screen, you can’t help but celebrate and commemorate as he experiences triumphs and his pains. I struggle to think of many actors that would have been able to hold the movie together to the same level as Tom Hanks.
While on the island, the movie is a riveting exploration of human willpower, it’s only when we leave this tropical outcrop the movie starts to struggle. With so much time devoted to Chuck, the development of other characters suffers as a result. Worst of all, his fiancé played by Helen Hunt. The relationship between her and Hanks’ was set up to be this big emotional ending, the only problem being that the connection between the two doesn’t work as their romance hadn’t been explored in much detail and the added issue of her marrying someone else felt like an unnecessary complication needed to pad out the runtime. That said, Cast Away remains a solid and enjoyable survival movie with an excellent central performance by the ever-dependable Tom Hanks.
If you liked: 127 Hours, The Perfect Storm, Vertical Limit