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Cast Away Film Analysis

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Danny Cross

Professor McCamy

English 112-107F

March 14, 2016

Cast Away Film Analysis

Wilson is Chuck’s guardian island angel. He leads Chuck through the entire stay on the island and keeps Chuck safe and gets him off the island. The character Wilson, who is nothing more than a decorated volleyball, was created by accident when the screen writer wanted to put himself in Chuck’s shoes on the island. Wilson plays a vital role in Chuck’s survival on the island, acting as his guardian angel and guiding Chuck through the gauntlet of surviving. Wilson’s departure is symbolic because he is only around for when Chuck needs him. Once rescue is on it is way Wilson takes a symbolic leave of absence. Wilson only leaves once Chuck is in the clear and Wilson’s work is done.

        Chuck Noland is a frantic, time-obsessed, UPS manager. The beginning of the story has him constantly yelling at his workers trying to demand the best out of them. His job requires him to follow some packages through their travels over oceans and continents. In the process of following packages around and timing them, the plane he was on crashes. Chuck finds himself on a deserted island all alone. Wilson is introduced after Chuck crashes on the island. He drifts away during Chucks escape. (Zemeckis, 2000)

The inspiration of Wilson is an incredible story that really shows just how in-depth this movie was developed. The screen writer for the movie, William Broyles, Jr was researching the film and after consulting survival experts trying to get a better idea of what this concept would be like, he decided he was not satisfied with the second hand stories and consolation from people who had been there. He needed to be in the shoes of the character Chuck Noland. William chose to deliberately strand himself on an island alone in isolation. The only way this screen writer could see into the life of his character he forced himself to fight for water, food, and shelter. During his stay on the beach in the Sea of Cortez, a volleyball washed ashore, and the idea of Wilson was born. (Anya, 2013)

Wilson plays a crucial role in Chucks stay on the island. There is foreshadowing in the delivery of Wilson, the card that came with it reads “The most beautiful thing about the world is the world itself”. Wilson acts a manifestation of island life. The simple volleyball represents nature and the world surrounding Chuck. He also represents Chuck’s struggles with nature. Being drawn from Chuck’s own blood Wilson acts as Chuck’s child. Chuck mourns the loss of Wilson as if he was a blood relative, because Wilson is blood (MovieMeaning, 2001). Chuck is a special person in the fact he was able to perform the job he performed for Fedex, someone like that could not be alone on an island for four years so Wilson also gives him someone to yell at, be social with and take care of. The social aspect is difficult to argue because Wilson gives no feedback to Chuck, as he is in fact just a volleyball. Although the volleyball is not simply a volleyball, it represents the island as a whole and Chucks struggle with it. Through this, Wilson keeps Chuck sane and offers a way to have 1v1 dialog on the island without having another person, without Wilson there would be no way to keep track of Chucks interior thought process.

This simple volleyball is in many ways Chuck’s island guardian angel. He provides over watch the entire time Chuck is on the island. Wilson also keeps Chuck distracted enough to not get too abysmal about his situation. I think that Wilson has a resemblance to the fates eye. The entire time Wilson is involved Chuck is totally at fates will, living alone on an island is more dangerous than most realize. Any wound can cause infection and kill, the elements can cause disease and skin problems, a third degree sunburn would kill the inhibitor. Any disease or slight sickness that in society would be just a run of the mill sickness can lead to death without doctors and medicine. When Chuck cut his hand and accidently created Wilson, the fact his hand did not get infected is a testament to Wilsons protection of Chuck. That very injury could’ve been the end of Chuck but instead it was the start of Chuck actually thriving on this island. Wilson is in fact demanding the best out of Chuck like chuck once demanded the best out of his workers at UPS.

The arrival and departure of Wilson says a lot about the role in the film he carries. Born through a struggle with nature, in Chuck’s attempt to create fire he slices his hand across his palm and in the midst of all the anger, pain, and blood Chuck tries to extinguish this anguish by grabbing and throwing the volleyball. The blood from his wound creates the blueprint for what he would sculpt into Wilson. Up until this point Chucks stay on the island has been very detrimental and Chuck cannot seem to win the battle with nature. The entire struggle was to try to yield a source of fire via a frustrating repetitive friction fire, shortly after Chuck wipes the blood away in the shape of two eyes, a nose, and a mouth. Wilson in on the scene, and a few minutes after his creation, the struggle for a friction fire is over and Chuck has won with the company of Wilson. This victory gains Chuck fire, and with fire comes warmth, cooked food, and a light source. Three mandatory things for survival, thanks to Wilson. Just a few hours into Wilson’s birth, Chuck’s quality of life has increased tremendously causing Chuck to bond with the volleyball and start to carry it around and bring it with him everywhere. Wilson arrives on a high note, bringing fire, and leaves chuck with the biggest gift of all, a way back home. During Chuck’s escape, the raft he crafted starts to slowly deteriorate, including the way he had Wilson fixed onto the raft. Chuck noticed Wilson is gone and can see him floating away but Chuck is forced to make a decision between Wilson, his island life, and the raft that will lead him to safety and his old life. His departure off the raft symbolizes that Chuck no longer needs Wilson, his work on the island with Chuck is over and fates eye is on to another abysmal situation to help a survivor out of a gruesome situation. The exit of Wilson marks Chuck’s entrance back into society and off the island. Although Wilson is gone, one can imagine Chuck’s character is forever changed by the experience he had with Wilson and that Chuck carries Wilson with him in his mind everywhere after the fact.

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