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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hanks is superb,
This review is from: Cast Away [Blu-ray] [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)Cast Away (2000)
Drama, 143 minutes
Directed by Robert Zemeckis
Starring Tom Hanks
Tom Hanks was probably the biggest box office draw for around 10 years, starting with Philadelphia in 1993. Like Meryl Streep, his performances haven't always won the awards they deserved. We expect excellence from Hanks and Streep, and it's never easy to add an Oscar after you have already won twice. Cast Away sees Hanks give one of his best performances, and that's saying a lot.
The opening part of the film introduces us to the life of Chuck Noland (Hanks). He works for FedEx and is obsessed with time. Everything has to happen according to schedule or he considers himself a failure. Noland is in love with Kelly Frears (Helen Hunt), but his life is too busy for him to make her his main priority. They have to exchange Christmas gifts in the car on their way to the airport because he doesn't make time for anything more significant. This is a common theme in the lives of too many people. We rush around, earning as much money as we can, barely slowing down long enough to spend time with the people we love. You don't miss it until it's gone.
Noland's plane crashes and he's the sole survivor. He manages to swim ashore and finds himself alone on an island. This isn't a new idea, but the execution is excellent. Noland is used to a comfortable life and has to learn how to survive in his new surroundings. Where will he live? What will he eat? Will he need to protect himself? What if he's ill or in pain? How will he remain sane? How will he escape and make his way back to civilization?
I enjoy Cast Away because it's such a peaceful movie. All we hear are natural sounds while Noland is trapped on the island. There isn't even any musical score during this extended sequence. It helps us realize what it is like to be completely alone. How would we adapt and survive? Would we have the mental strength to seek escape? It's an examination of how human beings think, and that always appeals to me.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect!!!!!,
5.0 out of 5 stars Wilson,
This review is from: Cast Away (Widescreen) (DVD)loved it all, Tom Hanks is fantastic. His Wilson is awe inspiring...Took my breath away. Humbled, I spent time in introspection.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent blu ray,
the picture quality and sound is exceptional.
5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Cast Away on Blu-ray,
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best stories ever told,
This review is from: Cast Away (Full Screen) (DVD)How can a modern human live without modern technology? Are we even capable of surviving on this Earth without a phone or (let's get basic) without iron or flint or domestic plants? And what would a man do without a companion, as if stranded on an island alone in the middle of the enormous ocean?
These are timeless questions and it is a very human story. Tom Hanks and crew have told this story beautifully. I have watched it many times and I will happily watch it many more.
5.0 out of 5 stars Cast Away ... excellent, but bent DVD editing,
This review is from: Cast Away (Widescreen) (DVD)A haunting film that says much about the human need for companionship, heartfelt loss and loneliness; and the triumph of the human spirit. Hanks does his usual impeccable presentation of a man in adversity, and his unmatched ability to make you forget it's Tom Hanks you are watching, and he persuades you to immerse yourself in the emotions and considerations of what you would do in such a situation.
Helen Hunt is perfect - as always - as the lost girlfriend, but it is Hanks that anchors the film. Indeed, his achievement is that he is the only element in the film for a greater part of it - but his anchor is hugely needed: because the film is otherwise a strangely dislocated narrative, with snap changes from intensely personal characterisation and emotion, to impersonal scene-setting, much of which is due to the extremely tedious product-placement of FedEx and Wilson; both of which are astoundingly trite and annoying in places; but perhaps not entirely inappropriate, given that the story has to have some reason for his being Cast Away - just too much at times - and in your face.
The narrative dislocation strangely works quite well, since it reflects the grotesque dislocation in his life from 'normal' to 'cast away'. As a whole the film has a draw that pulls you in - primarily because of its challenge in how you would manage the situation, and how desperation and the need for human contact can produce bravery and survival.
So a great film with a similar feel to 'Shawshank Redemption' and 'For Love of the Game' that draws you back to watch it again and again ... in it's triumph of a man over a great loss in his life: where his only way forward is ..."to keep on breathing"...
However, the real spoiler is the crunched DVD-editing deviation from the original theatrical film. Since you won't see it in the DVD (don't know about the Blu Ray), I can only give you the last 9 words of the original dialogue that totally changes the entire film in every possible way ... from great loss and sadness and inconsequential ending, into huge optimism and a new future, and a new sharing ... and also pulls together the FedEx theme, the welding girl, the removal of the name over her gate ... and so many subtle themes in the film ... that it's hard to believe the morons in the DVD editing suite were allowed to get away with it ... C'est la vie ...
A great watch - just remember the last words in the original ..." Hey cowboy, do you fancy a cup of coffee ? " ...
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb acting by Tom Hanks! Powerful, gripping movie!,
This review is from: Cast Away (Widescreen) (DVD)I started watching this movie during dinner, a time when I usually don't watch the ending of many movies. I generally turn off the TV and dash back to my beloved computer. BUT Hanks grabbed me from the first scene of this powerful movie, holding me captive until the bittersweet ending. He's a fine actor and was superb in this role.
Hanks plays the part of Chuck Noland, a FedEx systems engineer on company business when the plane crashes and he ends up alone on a deserted island. The photography and visuals are excellent when they follow Chuck's progress as he does everything humanly possible in order to survive. His physical and mental regression are heart-breaking to see, yet the film has its uplifting moments when he makes "friends" with a Wilson volleyball, using it as a "human" sounding board to keep his sanity. He names the ball "Wilson," of course. The scenes when he talks to the volleyball look rather "insane," but are the few touches of humor in the film.
The scene where Chuck "loses" Wilson touched my heart; a very moving moment. By that time in the movie, Director Robert Zemeckis's wisdom in choosing stark island scenes to emphasize Chuck's solitude were remarkably evident.
Just how does Chuck lose Wilson? How does he react? How is he finally rescued? How has his life changed when he gets back to the real world? How?...How?...How? And Is his girlfriend--played brilliantly by the fine actress Helen Hunt--still waiting for him after four years when everyone thought he was dead?
You will learn the answers to those questions as you view this film that is brought vividly to life through Hank's realistic portrayal and the director's keen insight into this character. The sound effects and rhythmic camera moves capture Chuck's emerging survival skills to perfection.
"Hope springs eternal in the human breast," and after one episode when Chuck almost gives up, he never loses hope again, clinging to it despite the odds he's facing. His hope never seems to fail him until he returns home and faces his new reality in a very moving confrontation with the sweetheart he left behind. (Being a hopeless romantic, at that moment in the movie, I wanted this film to end the way I wanted it to...but that wasn't meant to be...)
However, the film had a hopeful ending, one that left it up to the viewers to draw their own conclusions. I know what ending I chose, so I was not left with a feeling of wonderment, but with a strong feeling of hope and a fresh start for Chuck. Why not see this film and choose your own ending?
Even though it was rather odd for one man to carry an entire movie, that's what happened in this one--and Hanks was up to the job! I agree with the New York Post review: Tom Hanks "...gives one of the towering screen performances of all time." Five stars all the way to the bank...
Reviewed by Betty Dravis, June 3, 2010
Author of "Dream Reachers" (with Chase Von) and other books
3.0 out of 5 stars Destiny...,
This review is from: Cast Away (Widescreen) (DVD)Cast Away stars Tom Hanks as a modern-day Robinson Crusoe. After the plane in which he is travelling crashes into the ocean during a fierce gale (a sequence more heart-racing than anything in last summer's The Perfect Storm), John Nolan is left stranded alone on a small island in the South Pacific.
As an employee with Federal Express (who takes his job way too seriously), Hanks delivers a moving and Oscar-worthy performance in a fascinating study of how a workaholic copes with his loss of identity. Further, his physical transformation from a rather flabby yuppie to a 'caveman' is shocking. Hanks actually took a year off during filming to accomplish this, a stunt the studio felt was risky.
Robert Zemeckis, who previously directed Hanks to box-office gold in Forrest Gump, explores the classic theme of Man against Nature. Using the tropical scenery to its full advantage, Zemeckis allows us to share in the fear and isolation experienced by the title character.
A compelling story that never fails to entertain, the vignettes depicting Nolan's struggle are both poignant and humorous. With little or no dialogue for the bulk of the film, it is reminiscent of The Black Stallion. And one word of caution for the faint of heart: Nolan bleeds profusely after injuring himself several times, and at one point a rotted corpse washes up on the beach.
Sadly, promotions for the film confirm that Nolan escapes from his island prison after four long years. Hollywood moguls clearly underestimate the intelligence of contemporary audiences, insisting that we need to know exactly what we are paying for. Thus, it is not giving away anything by pointing out that the film delves into how Nolan's ordeal affects his relationship with his girlfriend, played by the always glowing Helen Hunt in the film's bookend scenes.
The film also suffers because it comes off as a lavish advertisement for FedEx; indeed, the producers should have cast away credibility in favour of a fictitious courier company.
While being marooned on a desert isle is a fantasy for many in today's hectic world, Cast Away clearly shows the mental strain one can suffer. Unfortunately, we learn little about how this changes Nolan's perspective. One message, however, is clear: fate controls our destiny. Rating: 7 out of 10.
3.0 out of 5 stars Way overhyped. It was good, just not THAT good.,
This review is from: Cast Away (Widescreen) (DVD)Quckly: Not bad, but not that good. Was way too popular when it came out, and I'm not sure why.
Summary: big fex-ex add where one of the bosses gets stranded on an island for 5 years.
The Good: the best part of this movie was the soundtrack. Well rather the lack of one (almost, see The Ugly). The entire time Mr. Hanks is stranded there is no music, no score, no mood tunes, nothing. Just the sounds that his character would hear. This added a great feel to the entire movie (well almost the entire movie). Probably the best man vs the elements movie I have seen since Perfect Storm. The acting was actually rather well, and you actually got the feel of Mr. Hanks loosing it. Wilson is actually funny, well the concept at least.
The Bad: I've heard many people call this a Fed-ex add, and well I have to agree with them. What I didn't expect was a bad add, the kind you would never air. Lets see what I learned. Fed-ex bosses abuse thier workers, they have no lives, their jobs consume them, they family life suffers and even then the packages still go out late. Their planes aren't safe, their pilots poor, and if they do 'loose' a package, they have no problem opening it to see if there is anything usefull inside. I wouldn't call that a good add for Fed-ex. I really didn't like the end of this movie. Sure it did the almost cool full circle, but it just didn't have the impact the rest of the movie did. It should have ended with the rescue. I didn't need to see just how badly he didn't fit in now.
The Ugly: okay earlier I praised the lack of a score or soundtrack. Well it's not totally gone. Every now and then, much to my chagrin they felt the need to throw in some mood music. The scene where Wilson floats away being the most memorable. That just pissed me off. Like Tom's acting and the scene itself couldn't convey "This is Sad".
Overall: really not bad at all, just not as good as everyone made it out to be. A great Man vs nature movie. It could have ended way earlier though, as the end seemed un-needed.
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Cast Away (Widescreen) by Robert Zemeckis (DVD - 2003)
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