Watching it today, I realise it's about how FedEx employee Chuck Noland (Tom Hanks) learns to let go of his desire to control of time, and learn to value the relationship he had with doctoral student girlfriend Kelly (Helen Hunt).
Chuck, who's overweight and has to plan in his diary to see Kelly, is so attached to his pager and telephone that his mock funeral had a pager and telephone placed in his casket.
"I should never have got on that plane," he tells Kelly after the two are reunited after four years.
It must have been torture living on an island all by himself with all the time in the world, but with nothing to do and control. He obsesses about getting packages to their destinations, lamenting to a colleague about a package arriving two minutes late. Many driven people can relate to this.
While stranded on the island, it's the watch with Kelly's picture in it that keeps him going. Even though the two don't get back together at the end, Chuck tells his colleague that at least he had her on the island.
Hanks's performance and weight loss are impressive. He shows us how an overweight guy adapted to life on the island and how he plodded on even though there was nothing else to life for.
4½ out of 5 stars
|Chuck's relationship with Wilson borders on the abnormal.|