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Better off alone

With the release of 'Oblivion' other movies where guys are forced to live in a lonely world

By David Walker
Special to MSN Movies

There's nothing like being alone, cut off from the contact of other human beings, to test the sanity and resolve of any person. From a storytelling standpoint, the isolated Lonely Guy provides a great opportunity to examine the fragile human psyche (just read Jack London's "To Build a Fire" or Richard Matheson's "I Am Legend"). From a cinematic standpoint, however, it can be challenging to make a movie about one person trying to survive, and not have an audience lose interest. Finding the right balance of solitude and interaction with others is essential to all Lonely Guy movies, whether they are post-apocalyptic survival tales, or stories of surviving some terrible accident. "Oblivion," starring Tom Cruise and directed by Joseph Kosinski ("TRON: Legacy"), is the most recent film to find a Lonely Guy sifting through the rubble of a destroyed world (and later this year, Jaden Smith will do the same thing in "After Earth"). With "Oblivion," Tom Cruise joins the ranks of other cinematic Lonely Guys who have faced the challenges of being alone. Here is a look at some of the most memorable and notable Lonely Guy movies.

Bing: More about 'Oblivion' | More about Tom Cruise | Related: The movie faces of Tom Cruise

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(Universal Pictures)