Cast Away

Cast Away (2000)

Plot summary

(48 votes)

Chuck Noland, a Federal Express efficiency supervisor, jets around the world trouble-shooting problems for the company. His life is driven by the clock, and he demands the same of FedEx employees. On Christmas Eve, he's unexpectedly dispatched on an assignment. Just before leaving, he proposes to his girlfriend, Kelly, and promises her, "I'll be right back". The FedEx plane he hitches a ride on hits a severe storm and is blown hundreds of miles off course. The plane crashes into the Pacific ocean, and Chuck, the only survivor, drifts to a small deserted island. For the next four years he struggles to survive, using salvaged items from washed up FedEx packages as tools (i.e. an ice skating boot becomes an axe). He purposely leaves one package unopened. Chuck's only companion is Wilson, a volleyball, and as time passes his loneliness leads to suicidal tendencies. Knowing he must get off the island, he builds a crude raft and heads out to sea.

Factual error: In the scene where a boy runs on the streets of Moscow, he passes by the famous Moscow landmarks: St Basil's cathedral, Moscow State University, Big Stone Bridge etc. In reality it would have taken him a good four or five hour run to do that.

More mistakes in Cast Away

Chuck Noland: I couldn't even kill myself the way I wanted to. I had power over nothing.

More quotes from Cast Away

Trivia: When the shots on the island were finished, the sound had to be completely redone, as the surf was too loud.

More trivia for Cast Away

Question: At the end when the pick-up truck drives away, there is an angel on the back flap of it, similar to the angel in the garden of the house where Tom Hanks delivers the parcel. Are we to assume that the parcel belongs to the woman in the pick-up, and that this is significant in some way?

Answer: It's a little complicated. The angel wings are a plot device to show that the parcel Tom Hanks just delivered to the ranch belongs to the woman (who is an artist) in the truck, which also has the wings painted on the tailgate. The wings are her artistic "logo." As Hanks stands in the crossroads deciding which way he will go, his looking back in the direction that she just drove off implies he will go back to her house, probably to let her know what she did for him while he was on the island (giving him hope that he could someday deliver that package) and possibly to restart his life with her (she is pretty, after all). She was married to the guy in Russia who she sent the package to, but he was cheating on her. If you notice the gateway over the entrance to her property where another package was delivered at the beginning of the movie, both her name and her husband's was on the overhead ironwork, as well as the angel wings. At the end, his name has since been removed, indicating that she is now single.

raywest Premium member

Wow, you are extremely observant. Thank you, I was totally confused at the end

Also, the artist would have been on the island with him just like Kelly was in the watch.

Answer: The Angel wings are an important symbolic thread that run throughout the move. They appear in several scenes. They represent love/hope/salvation. We first see them in a seemingly unrelated scene at the pretty redhead artist's ranch when she is still married to the cheater dude. She sends him the wings on a package but the package is not important. Rather the Wings on the package are important. She intended the wings to go to her cheating husband but instead they went to Chuck. Chuck preserves the wings. He caresses the wings. Later we see that he has drawn dozens of the same wings on the inside of his cave wall. On the raft, he takes only Wilson and the Wings which he carefully wraps in leaves. When finally delivering them home, Chuck writes "this package saved my life" when he means hope/love/salvation have saved his life. The wings have make the exact same journey as Chuck. They have finally returned to the redhead and bought Chuck with them.

I agree with your assessment, though the wings serve more as a practical plot device. It helps the audience to recognize and track the package as it moves through the story and for Chuck to tie it to the woman's truck at the end, which also had the wings painted on the tailgate.

raywest Premium member

Nailed it! My thoughts exactly I just needed confirmation that all of this was reasonable to assume. Thank you.

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