It’s really hard to hate Tom Hanks. With the bevy of roles he’s played in the last three decades, he’s slowly penetrated the hearts of moviegoers, carving out a nook for himself as the everyday-man you want to see win. He’s played an AIDS victim, a scrappy toy cowboy, and the most memorable kind-hearted, chocolate-adoring, fast as the wind ninny you’d ever meet at a bus stop. And with Captain Phillips, the based-on-a-true-story dramatic thriller from Bourne alum Paul Greengrass, Hanks adds another hat to his ever-growing repertoire.
The man can do no wrong.
In the film, he plays the titular character, in charge of a commercial freighter seized by Somali pirates. To avoid his crew from being pummeled with bullet holes, he needs to keep his cool and brave the situation. The realistic (and often claustrophobic) style the movie is shot in, coupled with Hanks moving acting chops, makes for an oft-tense ride worthy of a screening with pops and your bros.
The fact that he’s also kind, intelligent, critically acclaimed, and extremely talented, doesn’t help his case (or ours) for perceiving him as a peg-ng-buhay. Because we simultaneously love and hate Tom Hanks for his tenacious ability to take on a role with chameleon-like swagger, we reason out his likeability with roles that got him where he is today. Curse you, Tom Hanks!
EVEN WHEN HE’S PLAYING DUMB, HE’S QUITE SMART
THE MOVIE: FORREST GUMP (1994)
“Life is like a box of chocolates” could never have been truer for Forrest Gump. His epic story shows that being slow of wit isn’t an excuse to miss out on life. Gump overcomes leg braces, fights in the army, inspires the phrase “shit happens,” and even starts a shrimp business, all while never forgetting his love for dear Jenny. Most can barely get anywhere with an average IQ.
HE MAKES IT OKAY TO SHED MAN-TEARS
THE MOVIE: PHILADELPHIA (1993)
As AIDS-stricken law firm associate Andrew Beckett, Tom Hanks won his first Oscar for Best Actor (he won back-to-back with Forrest Gump the year after). In this sad courtroom drama about homophobia and the HIV virus, Hanks brings even the toughest of beefcakes to tears.
ACTING OPPOSITE A VOLLEYBALL: EASY
THE MOVIE: CAST AWAY (2000)
It’s forgivable for anyone who has seen lost-at-sea drama Castaway to forget that Helen Hunt was actually a co-star in the movie. But everyone remembers Wilson: the volleyball-cum-conversation-partner that Hanks’ marooned Chuck Noland used to stay sane. Apparently low-budget productions are fond of Hanks, seeing as he does the best dramatic monologues with inanimate objects.
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