Friday, March 24, 2017

Cast Out

I was recently watching Cast Away (2000), a huge hit for Tom Hanks (and the last time he was nominated for an Oscar).  This time around something stuck out that I'm sure didn't occur to anyone when they made it.

I assume you know the story--after a plane crash he gets stuck on an island in the middle of the ocean.  He works for Federal Express, and many of their packages wash ashore.  He opens them all but one--it keeps him going knowing he's got something to deliver if he ever gets back.  (Kind of silly, but okay).

So he finally gets off the island and at the end of the film delivers the package.  He's driving away and stops at a crossroads, trying to figure where to go next.  (I guess it's a metaphor, but I ignore them in films.)

The woman who owns the place he just delivered to drives by and gives him some directions.  And it occurred to me this looks really weird today. Anyone under, say, 20, might have trouble figuring out his problem.  Everyone has GPS on their phones now.  No one needs to look at a map to figure out which way to turn.

The last shot of the film is his looking in the direction of the woman.  Will he go after her?  All I know is GPS would have ruined the ending.

6 Comments:

Blogger ColumbusGuy said...

Do you not ignore them in novels?

12:07 PM, March 24, 2017  
Blogger LAGuy said...

I don't believe in metaphors and symbols. They're a waste of time.

12:27 PM, March 24, 2017  
Blogger New England Guy said...

Yes He would look at his GPS and drive off the road to his death as a distracted driver. Irony, non?

1:26 PM, March 24, 2017  
Blogger ColumbusGuy said...

How do you feel about Joseph Campbell, then? And I would think mythology would interest you as storytelling, or is that too remote for your tastes?

1:30 PM, March 24, 2017  
Blogger LAGuy said...

Ancient folk tales are some of the best stories around. Joseph Campbell works in an interesting area, though I haven't read enough of his stuff to have a strong opinion.

1:49 PM, March 24, 2017  
Anonymous Denver Guy said...

Cast Away is perhaps my favorite Hanks film. I watch it every 2 or 3 years, and have noted it growing more and more out of date, but that harkens back to Hanks' character being out of date after 4 or 5 years on the island. Take his surprise that the Tenn. Titans won a Superbowl (we've come all the way around - it would be a surprise now too.

I've always wondered if FedEx paid for their prominent role in the film? Probably not because Fed Ex at the time really stood alone for when "when it absolutely, positively, has to be there on time", which serves as an unspoken counterpoint to the theme of the film.

8:54 AM, March 27, 2017  

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