Cast Away

Movie review by Nell Minow, Common Sense Media
Cast Away Poster Image

Common Sense says

age 13+

Powerful, brutal, and mature drama is emotionally intense.

PG-13 2000 143 minutes

Parents say

age 12+

Based on 16 reviews

Kids say

age 12+

Based on 46 reviews

Did we miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.

A Lot or a Little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 15+

Way too much for 11 year old

We normally watch '13' stuff but this was way too much for 11yo. Closeups of a bloated corpse, wounds etc etc . Is it good? No idea. Only got 1/3 of the way through before we had to turn it off, and that's a rare occurrence. Seems more of a psychodrama adults would enjoy more anyway.

This title has:

Great role models
Too much violence
1 person found this helpful.
age 12+


I watched Castaway with my 10-year-old son and we were both completely engaged. I had no squirmish moments where I thought that he should leave the room and my son most enjoyed the survival scenes on the island. However, the movie could easily be a FedEx commercial. Parts of the movie also seemed completely contrived, such as the dialogue the main character, Chuck, has with his friend after he is rescued. Chuck talks about his lack of control on the island, how he could not even succeed at suicide and all he could do is keep "breathing". (Reminiscent of the dialogue Tom Hanks has with a friend in Sleepless in Seattle where he talks about how after his wife died "all he could do is breath in and out.") In Castaway, Chuck also talks about how "you never know what the tide is going to bring in." (Reminiscent of the famous Forest Gump line "life is like a box of chocolates . . .") Nonetheless, the last scene where Chuck is at a crossroad not knowing which way to go next, while contrived, was a positive and hopeful ending. I am not sure that my son got all the subtleties of this last scene but he understood that it was a happy ending.

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models
1 person found this helpful.

Movie Details

Our Editors Recommend

  • Swiss Family Robinson Poster Image

    Swiss Family Robinson

    Good intro to older movies for kids; watch for stereotypes.

    age 8+
  • The Black Stallion Poster Image

    The Black Stallion

    Breathtakingly beautiful, magical classic is a must-see.

    age 8+
  • Survivor Poster Image


    Plotting and scheming in paradise for $1,000,000.

    age 11+

Character Strengths

Find more movies that help kids build character.

  • Young girl playing
    See all
  • Young child laughing
    See all
  • Child cross country skiing
    See all

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate