Tom Hanks roughs it "Gilligan's Island" style after his FedEx plane goes down in the South Pacific. The experience later teaches him one of life's toughest, yet richest, lessons in love and life.
Chuck Noland (Hanks) is a manager for FedEx who lives his life by the same deadlines imposed on the packages he delivers. He's dedicated to his job, which calls for extensive traveling around the world to train company workers how to be as time efficient as he is. But his life takes a dramatic turn when en route to South East Asia. His FedEx plane plunges into the ocean, leaving him to fend for himself on a deserted island. His love for his girlfriend, Kelly Frears (Helen Hunt), keeps him alive and the FedEx packages that wash ashore keep him sorting. But when he finally makes it off the island, he quickly realizes how things have changed back home.
Hanks once again delivers a character who's easy to warm up to. He's not exactly Forrest Gump, but there's plenty of charm and depth to Chuck. As has been typical of her characters of late, Hunt's Kelly is as bland as they come (see her in "Want Women Want" to get the picture). The rest of the supporting cast mainly remains on the back burner. But "Cast Away" is really somewhat of a one-man show for Hanks to shine -- and he does.
Robert Zemeckis ("Forrest Gump" "Contact") directs yet another film that goes way beyond what is shown on the big screen. There's depth to the main character in this film, as well as a story that takes us deep within a single man's pain, misery and enlightenment after learning what's really important to him in life. The crash scene is especially of note, since it brings a nice touch of excitement to a film that mostly deals with a slow-paced journey into Chuck's deepest most inner thoughts.
A film to take along as a luxury item if ever chosen to be on "Survivor."