Who doesn’t fantasize at least a couple of times a year about running ashore on a desert island? Sometimes in a romantic way, but in my case it’s usually all about the worst-case scenario’s and how I would handle it. Actual imagining ways to survive almost every possible bad situation in life, from being stuck in a fire to hiding from a murderer. I know right? A bit over the top? But hey, maybe this sense of drama is also the source of my passion for movies. Anyway it sure does explain why I’ve always been intrigued by disaster and survival movies and why, overall, I really enjoyed ‘Cast Away’. This and the fact that it’s starring Tom Hanks of course.
I watched this movie once before as a teenager, but couldn’t entirely recall how the story went. I did however remember I really liked it. So I pressed my space bar with high expectations… And then I pressed it a couple of times more. What a perfect timing for this stubborn laptop to keep me hanging. Anyway,honestly I must admit I was a little disappointed after watching only the first few shots. The directing felt way too slow and predictable at first. There’s the possible excuse for it being an ‘old’ movie. But I feel like it’s kind of old-fashioned even for a movie made in 2000. Sometimes it’s just way too obvious or overdone. For example when Chuck crawls over the beach, stops and sits perfectly framed next to the camera or when the storm scene is just a bit too long. Not in timing per se, but in terms of using too many similar shots.
Of course a lot of these things are also the result of slow and too explicit editing. I’m not sure if it’s a personal feeling or just a matter of generation. – Or maybe I was just still moody from my laptop giving up on me, making me a bit stricter. ‘Cause if you’ve seen my ‘Back to the basics‘-post, you’ll know that I usually adore these ‘simple’ movies. – The good thing though is that he story is that good, you get sucked in right from the start and hardly ever notice it again. And when it does make you lose focus, it’s usually by cutting too much, for example with the scene in which Chuck tries to make fire for the third time. This is probably the worst scene when it comes to directing and editing in the entire movie. Boy, my brother’s driving skills don’t even make me that nauseous. Even though it’s full of close-ups, you’re still all over the place. There’s just too many cuts and different camera positions.
But then what makes this movie so good? Except for the sometimes too explicit dialogue or actually monologue, the great storyline and of course… the excellent performance of Tom Hanks and in a relatively small role, but still really good, Helen Hunt. Hats off to Hanks for handing us a brochure of his acting range. Is there even an emotion left he didn’t show? Ok, it wasn’t always exactly spot on, by which I don’t mean overacted per se, but still kind of too explicit. But I mean in the important scenes, the ones that are necessary for the credibility of the entire plot, he just absolute smashed those nails on the head. And then there’s Helen Hunt. Usually I’m not her biggest fan, but she did such a good job here. She acted in a very subtle and honest way making her seem fragile, but strong at the same time – if that makes any sense … – Anyway her acting with Hanks was just pure chemistry. What a great onscreen couple.
And what do couples do? Oh yes, that’s right. They kiss! 😀 Which brings me to the often discussed concept of a rain kiss. But come on, no discussion needed here right? When a kiss like this is preceded by a well-acted and perfectly elaborated storyline like that, it’s just pure fireworks. Anyone disagreeing? Please explain, ’cause to me this kiss is capable of even turning Vladimir Putin to the pink side ;).
Still my favorite scene is not at the end though. It’s the scene in which Chuck dances around his first fire. I don’t want to spoil too much, but to those who’ve already seen the movie: isn’t it just so sweet and funny at the same time? My heart literally melted. – I’m just gonna walk right past the obvious joke trying to get my attention here.
So in short: technically not perfect, but you know what, when it’s finished you don’t even care. That’s how good the content is. Go watch it and then in a few years watch it again. That’s what I’ll do!
Any request, comments or spelling remarks? Please let me know. See you tomorrow!