Top Three Tom Hanks Performances

With Angels & Demons due to hit the big screens, I thought it might be a good time to put together a podium for Tom Hanks. Honorable mentions include Philadelphia, Forrest Gump and a personal favourite of mine – Apollo 13. When movies of that quality don’t make the cut, you know you’re doing something right.

3. Big

Given different casting, this film could easily have turned into badly made slapstick, but Hanks is believable and like-able as the teenager who wakes up in a man’s body, and the movie is funny and charming because of it. It’s a formula that has been tried several time since, without ever achieving the same success. The early part of Hanks’ career is defined by his comedy movies, and this role showcases his comedic talents best.

2. Cast Away

It’s not easy injecting gravitas into a film in which your co-star is a volleyball, but Hanks achieves it here, and by the mid-point of the movie you are more emotionally invested in Wilson than you would have thought possible for an inflatable sphere. We see Hanks’ regular joe side at the start of this, but he switches up to depict the tormented isolation his character goes through on the island. This is no Lost, and there are no polar bears or smoking hot Evangeline Lilly’s to keep him occupied. Just Wilson, some DIY dentistry and some damn fine acting.

A fine companion, but lousy swimmer.

Wilson - fine companion, lousy swimmer.

1. Saving Private Ryan

Hanks plays the jaded, hard as nails army veteran in this one, and turns in a performance that would have made John Wayne proud. There is depth to his war-weary Captain Miller; he is dry, funny, raw, occassionally out of control, completely heroic in a thoroughly realistic manner and utterly flawed. In one scene, the men in his unit are stunned to learn that in another life Tom Hanks’ character was a schoolteacher. You can achieve the same effect by watching a re-run of Splash.

Previous Podium – Top Three Movie Going Jack-Asses

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2 Responses to “Top Three Tom Hanks Performances”

  1. Reviews – Angels and Demons « Cinestuff Says:

    […] Cinestuff Cinematic reviews, rants and ramblings « The Podium – Top Three Tom Hanks Performances […]

  2. The Podium – Top Three Ben Stiller Movies « Cinestuff Says:

    […] Previous Podium – Top Three Tom Hanks Films technorati tags:Film,Indie Film,Actors, […]

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