Review by Pete Mason
One actor. That’s all the casting for “All Is Lost.” Just one actor. But when that actor happens to be Robert Redford, well, that changes things a bit.
Sailing the Indian Ocean on a yacht, without a known purpose, backstory, family or history of the character – not even a name for him, for who has to say his name? – Redford (known as “Our Man” in the credits) braves the elements, a damaged ship and despair over eight days stranded in the Indian Ocean without a glimmer of hope.
In a solo performance at sea, there is little need for dialogue, or monologue in this case. Redford speaks the most before the movie title appears, reading a letter that apologizes to unknown recipients, but likely his family. Aside from this, he speaks only into a radio to report and S.O.S., screams “Fuuuuuuuuck” when his fresh water becomes contaminated with sea water, and finally when he yells at passing ships. That’s it. This isn’t “The Artist¸” but as silent films go, this is pretty close. The sound editors and foley artists are the only ones keeping the film from being a silent film.