Tom Hanks as Chuck Noland
Helen Hunt as Kelly
The scenery is especially beautiful, and the effects are seamless with the rest of the film. The plane crash at the beginning is also an incredibly horrifying moment and was vividly created. This is one movie you wont see shown on airplanes. His time at sea during a storm is also breathtaking.
Tom Hanks does an incredible performance in this role, as you would guess. It demands a lot from him both emotionally and physically. He is truly a changed person between the beginning of the film and the end. He very effectively acts like someone who has been stranded and isolated for a very long time. I dont think it spoils anything to say he eventually makes it home you could have guessed that. His homecoming is truly emotional. His reunion with Kelly is a real memorable moment. Overall, this is a very amazing film.
What Didn’t Work:
Whats even worse is that director Robert Zemeckis does this on purpose. He did it with the What Lies Beneath trailer which also blew the whole movie. Heres a quote from him from USA Today:
Even director Robert Zemeckis agrees with the approach. “When people go to movies nowadays, they really prefer to know everything about the movie before they see it, ” he says. “We can’t give them everything, but we have to give them enough. It’s a strange alchemy. If you try to be too coy, the audience resents that. And you also can’t be too coy when you’re competing in this marketplace.”
So Zemeckis tells us we want to know the whole movie in advance, so hes going to give it to us in two minutes for free. Should we be insulted or grateful for saving us $8 on a ticket?
Then, we are insulted yet again by Zemeckis with the ending of the film. During the course of the movie, Chuck keeps one unopened Fed Ex package from the plane wreck which he finally delivers to the owner after getting home. We have a lot of time and emotion invested in this package, yet the film never shows us what is in it. I suppose thats their way of saying, Oh, it doesnt matter what was in it. Use your imagination. The same goes for the ending of the movie. We dont know what happens with Chuck. It leaves it totally up in the air. Again, an artsy fartsy ending for the movie where we, the audience, draw our own conclusion. Zemeckis thinks this is the ending we should have, yet it is a totally unsatisfying one.
So we are insulted twice by them in giving away the whole movie, then not giving us a satisfying ending. All because this is what they say the audience wants. They are wrong on both accounts.
Aside from those two major gripes, I did think way too much time and emotional drama was invested in the volleyball. Many long dramatic moments were spent on this volleyball, especially towards the end. I realize the volleyball represents Chucks last grip on sanity and hope, but I never bought into it, so I didnt care when those dramatic moments came. They were wasted to me.
So, this is a great movie, but it his hurt most by its own marketing.