Thursday, April 25, 2013

CASTAWAY (1986) - Nicolas Roeg

Who wouldn't want to live for a year on a desert island with the gorgeous Amanda Donohoe as your new "wife"? A few stipulations before you sign on the dotted line...

She will be nude nearly every minute of the day yet refuse to let you sleep with her (other than back-to-back in your sleeping bag). You will be prone to large festering boils on your legs due to prolonged sun exposure and malnutrition. One or the both of you will nearly die from exotic fruit poisoning. You will do most of the fishing. She will give you much grief about your sudden outbursts of anger, bouts of tropical ennui. You will do magic tricks with eggs for her, but only every once in a while.

Still interested? I was most of the time. But then Roeg snared me in the opening credits with that damned Kate Bush song. Castaway is Roeg in Walkabout Lite mode, another odd couple trapped with nature and each other set against stunning backdrops. The backdrop of Tuin Island is not quite as stunning as the Outback's malevolent beauty in Walkabout. I'd rather spend time with Jenny Agutter and David Gulpilil than with the sunburnt and squabbling Reed and Donohoe. But, hey, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? tends to work better many more years into a marriage and in a depressing New England setting.

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