Review of Shipwrecked

Shipwrecked (1990)
Not 'The Coral Island'
4 September 2005
Warning: Spoilers
I borrowed this movie because I assumed from the cover blurbs and photographs that it was based on the book 'The Coral Island', by RM Ballantyne. It transpires it is not and in fact owes more to 'Swiss Family Robinson' in particular, and 'Robinson Crusoe'.

It is a good, honest representative of the South Sea Island castaway genre that is probably a vanishing category in these postcolonialist, postmodernist days. A film in which there are palm trees swaying is always worth watching. It contains toothless pirates, 'savages', and a cabin boy who is almost impossibly pretty.

This is probably the most recent movie (1990) to have had the cheek to resort to one of the old favourites - a guy in a gorilla suit - into the plot. Of course, there are no free-range gorillas in the Fiji Islands, or anywhere outside of Africa, but who cares. What is more puzzling is that after the boy befriends the gorilla, it disappears from the film. I expected it reappear in the denouement, perhaps beating up pirates, but it doesn't. In terms of the plot, what was the point?

My kids though the film was okay.
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