Isolate The Main Character – 7 Movies. Sometimes it’s good to have time to yourself. You can get things done that you’ve always wanted to do and you can re-evaluate the way you’re living your life and the time off can help to recharge your batteries. When you’re all alone you never know what may happen and what you may learn about yourself.
The Shallows (2016)
Isolate The Main Character: Nancy (Blake Lively) is a medical student who is going through the grieving process after the loss of her mother. She decides drop her course at medical school and instead takes a trip to Mexico to put her loss at the back of her mind. An adventurous thrill seeker, Nancy feels alive amongst the waves and despite a warning about the high and low tides on a secluded beach she decides to stay out on her surfboard a little longer than is wise.
Then while out in the sea she notices a dead whale floating in the water and before she knows it, Nancy is attacked by a great white shark. What follows is a tense cat and mouse (or shark and person) game where Nancy has to use her medical knowledge and her wits to fight for survival and along the way she learns that life is worth the fight.
All is Lost (2013)
Isolate The Main Character: Our Man (Robert Redford) is a lone sailor whose best years are probably behind him. He’s still very accomplished at his hobby though and has never shied away from a challenge, knowing that every challenge should be taken one task at a time. However, whilst on a solo voyage on the Indian Ocean, Our Man wakes up to find his boat has been hit by a shipping container and is sinking. His radio’s dead and his navigation equipment is useless and so Our Man sails out into the ocean unaware that he’s sailing right into the path of a storm.
All is Lost is a film that shows a man whom many may feel is past his best and not capable anymore. However, due to Redford’s outstanding performance it shows that as far as his character and the actor himself is concerned, this couldn’t be farther from the truth. Read as an analogy for old age as well as being a masterclass in how to highlight an actor, showing the full extent of what they can do when pushed to the limit, All is Lost will have audiences on the edge of their seats.
Isolate The Main Character: Ivan Locke (Tom Hardy) is a construction manager making his way home after a late-night meeting. He’s got a two-hour drive ahead of him from Birmingham to London, but due to a series of events and an unsettling phone call, Locke will have to do what he can do while driving and thinking of what to do next so that his entire life doesn’t fall apart.
Locke is a one man show written and directed by Steven Knight that focusses entirely on Hardy’s performance as one long car journey turns into a life changing event. Besides Hardy being the only on-screen presence, there are other well-known faces who help move the story along, such as Olivia Colman, Ruth Wilson and Tom Holland as Locke’s son. However, audiences will have to recognise their voices as Locke calls them to ensure that the repercussions of his secret don’t have a detrimental effect. Locke tells a story that shows the audience that you never know when your secrets will catch up with you.
Isolate The Main Character: Mike Enslin (John Cusack) makes a living writing books on hotels that are supposedly haunted, his ethos being that he’s never truly had a supernatural experience and spends most of his work debunking the myths. However, Enslin is unfortunate in being that he is the protagonist in a short story written by Stephen King.
The big screen adaptation of King’s story is perhaps not the most famous of his stories about a writer who stays in a hotel and 1408 may not be the most famous of King’s hotel rooms, but 1408 still manages to give scares to its audience and everything they may expect from an adaptation of his work. King fans and horror fans will all find something to their liking and 1408 benefits greatly from not adhering to the popular torture porn subgenre that was popular at the time of the film’s release. Cusack’s understated performance helps add to the terror when he truly feels it, which only enhances the experience as the film is mostly centred around him. Perhaps a film to remind an audience that time alone can be good, but reconnecting with loved ones can be just as rewarding.
127 Hours (2010)
Isolate The Main Character: 127 Hours tells the true story of Aron Ralston (James Franco), a mountain climber who gets trapped under a boulder whilst canyoning alone near Moab, Utah. Whilst trapped, Ralston looks back at his life and thinks about the good times, the bad times and how he could have made very different choices in his life. All the while thinking that he may have to do something drastic and life changing in order to survive.
Ralston does indeed survive and the decision to cut off his own arm rather than dying turns out to be the best decision he ever made. The hope for his future is what drives him to get himself out of his seemingly impossible situation and even today, Ralston still climbs mountains. Although these days he prefers to tell people where he’ll be before he ventures into the unknown.
Isolate The Main Character: Dr. Ryan Stone (Sandra Bullock) is an astronaut on her first mission in space. Feeling confident because of the presence of jovial and good natured, Matt Kowalski (George Clooney), Dr. Stone finds her life quite literally spiralling out of control when space debris hits the shuttle and she finds herself drifting into space. What follows is a journey of survival, self-acceptance and courage as Dr. Stone overcomes her biggest fears, driven by the loss of her daughter and forcing herself to do the impossible so that her daughter’s death won’t be in vein.
Gravity is the Oscar winning film from director Alfonso Cuaron, the likes of which audiences had never seen before. A visually stunning and yet tightly compact story, Gravity tells the story of what can push the human spirit when they feel that all hope is gone. Bullock’s mostly lone screen presence also garnered her a much-deserved Oscar and gave audiences a human story that many can relate to even when the setting is so distant to our own. An inspiring story to remind us that even when we’re at our worst we can still achieve our best.
Life of Pi (2012)
Isolate The Main Character: Pi Patel (Irrfan Khan) has led an interesting life. So, when a writer (Rafe Spall) turns up to ask him about his life story, Patel is more than happy to indulge in his story and leaves no stone unturned as he embellishes on his fantastical journey from India to Canada while transporting the animals from his family’s zoo. Unfortunately, young Patel’s (Suraj Sharma) life takes a dramatic turn when the ship carrying his family and the zoo gets caught in a storm leaving Patel as the only survivor, well the only survivor besides Richard Parker, the zoo’s Bengal tiger.
Life of Pi is another beautifully shot Oscar winning film, this time from director Ang Lee. Based on David Magee’s novel, the film explores everything from faith, beauty and the best of what cinema can do – like Gravity, even being shot in 3D to get the best out of the technology. Life of Pi delivers a truly unique cinematic experience. Even when alone there are no limits to your imagination, you can do anything you put your mind to and what you do may even inspire others to follow their own dreams. Nothing lasts forever and things will get better. Look after yourselves.
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