The movie Cast Away is a movie written by William Broyles and depicts the challenge of survival on a remote island in the Pacific Ocean that the movie’s main character Chuck has to face for several years in order to overcome this challenge. He has to conform to the rules of nature and learn to survive in contrast to his normal everyday life where life is easy. The movies the main character is a manager that works in the mail company named Fed Ex where he seems to have worked his way up. He travels with a plane from Russia to Malaysia and his plane crashes in the middle of the Pacific Ocean and as the only survivor after the crash, he manages to paddle his way to an island where he becomes forced to survive.
The protagonist Chuck is very organized work centered individual that values his time and it is important for him to use his time productively and follow his schedule. Chuck could be described as an American stereotypical middle-aged man with his slightly fat body and his loud outgoing personality type. The way he talks is quite down to earth and he speaks like an average American with different types of slang and following the fact that he works in the Fed Ex company can make us believe that he is an upper-middle-class citizen, he is definitely not the “elite” or a lower-class individual. He is depicted as not overly educated but more work centered and he probably started working straight away after high school.
His work is very important for him and most of his life is very centered around his work, and his girlfriend named Kelly. When he get stranded on his island his first motivation is to get straight back where he came from and therefore he takes his inflatable lifeboat and tries to escape from the island and collects different Fed Ex boxes that he wants to deliver. He fails to escape and his next motivation is to survive so he can meet his girlfriend and he keeps his little clock with a picture with Kelly that inside of it around his neck. He adapts to survival but then he starts to lose hope because he realizes he probably never gets to leave the island and meet his girlfriend. He then considers suicide and when he “discusses” with Wilson (himself) and he suggests that makes a doll in order to find out if he can hang himself. The only thing he is able to control is how and when he is going to die but he finds out that hanging himself wouldn’t work and he could not even control that. Then he later figures out that he needs to keep “breathing” and keep on surviving.
The antagonist that Chuck struggles to overcome in the movie is the nature that he struggles to survive in. We can for instance look at the storm which made the airplane go down and put him in his position on the island. We can also look at the waves when he tries to escape both times that try to stop him from leaving the island and they succeed somewhat even though we make it at the second attempt. Throughout the movie, we get to meet a whale that marks the different changes in the chuck’s journey. The first time the whale shows up is when Wilson the volleyball fall of the raft and got lost, and the whale symbolizes the time for Chuck
His actions are affected by his hopelessness and his anger and become increasingly more impulsive. We can see when he tries to make fire and fails and hurt his hand he get a burst of anger and decides to slam the volleyball in the closest bush and when he decides that he wants to kill himself and therefore tries to make test to see if it would work. His suicidal thoughts are not as impulsive and more carefully planned.
Chuck is a social being that needs other people to socialize with like all humans to an extent to not become mad and develop mental illnesses. When he fails to make a fire and out of anger throws the volleyball with a brand name called Wilson away and he carves a face out of the blood on the volleyball. He names the volleyball Wilson after its brand name and starts gradually to talk to the volleyball. He puts his “reflective” side of the brain in the volleyball in a way to protect himself from going totally insane. Wilson almost becomes a minor character even though Wilson’s voice and being is just another part of chuck. An example from the movie is when Chuck is short of rope and Wilson “suggests” that he should climb up the mountain to retrieve thirty extra feet of rope to finish the wooden raft to escape the island. When he throws Wilson and gets his blood on the ball he puts part of his DNA on the ball and at the same time gradually a part of his mind into the ball.
Chuck’s physical form develops throughout the movie, he goes from a chubby, very pale and clean-shaven man to a very skinny, lean and sunburned man and he becomes more adapted to the environment both physically and mentally. We can compare chuck to the volleyball Wilson in the way that they are both very pale and clean in the start but after several years both chuck and Wilson gets dirty and “brownish” and both gets long hair even though the “long hair” on Wilson is straws and plants it is still a great comparison.
Chuck is an interesting character that develops throughout the movie. His will develops drastically from trying to get back, to survive on the island and even suicidal ambitions. He is a very social being and splits himself and put a part of his character in the volleyball to prevent himself from getting insane. His character goes from a chubby pale man to a skinny, lean, long-haired and adapted to survive in Pacific nature that is present on the island. Throughout all the on the island years he manages to survive and then later he builds a raft to be able to get away from the island.