Tagged: Forrest Gump

 

Our resident film guru Kyle McGrath takes a look at the Top Five Tom Hanks movies.

5. The Money Pit
After proving himself as a leading man in the raunchy comedy Bachelor Party Tom Hanks found success again in the much more family friendly film The Money Pit. This was the first film of his I ever saw and one that was a favourite at my house growing up. The Money Pit marks not only the very first collaboration between Tom Hanks and Stephen Spielberg but also marks a time in Hanks’ career after he had made the successful leap from tv to movies but before making the leap from comedy to drama, not to say he didn’t always have it in him already to do so. The story of a young couple trying to renovate their dream house only to find that everything that can go wrong, does go wrong is a movie which has inspired countless other films since and having recently rewatched it still holds up as a great family film today.
4. The Ladykillers
Despite being made way back in 2004 this is still one of Tom Hanks’ latest comedy roles and what I personally consider to be one of the Coen Brothers’ most underrated features. The black comedy “The Ladykillers” was heavily criticised I remember upon release for I guess the perceived blasphemy of being a reimagining of the 1955 Alec Guinness/Peter Sellers original. With Hanks starring as the eccentric southern professor who, with his crew of misfits, plots to rob a casino under the nose of an elderly landlady the film features a cast of colourful characters, an amazing soundtrack and of course the Coen’s devilish dark humour.
3. Toy Story 2
Although I was quite young when the original Toy Story movie came out I can remember how much I loved it and even back then I knew my enjoyment of the story of Woody & Buzz and their friendship was largely thanks to the performances of Tom Hanks and Tim Allen. At the time I would have been happy with just a simple follow up but Pixar managed to really knock it out of the park with their very first sequel. Toy Story 2 is a movie which I’ve grown to appreciate more as I’ve grown older and been able to appreciate the way the filmmakers were able to tell a story which worked on one level for children but on a completely different level for adults at the same time. While it’s a fun adventure film for the kids adults can see that Woody’s journey in this film is really about a character who must face his own form of mortality in the sad reality that, one way or another, his owner Andy at some point won’t want to play with him any more. He eventually accepts this and understands that the important thing in life is to enjoy the time he has left. It’s a very strong message for an animated film about talking toys and one which was handled with such subtlety that if anything it made me feel that Toy Story 3 in comparison was somewhat emotionally manipulative and redundant.
2. Forrest Gump
Possibly his most memorable role and one which won him his second leading man academy award in as many years. Forrest Gump is the story of a man who from the offset of his life looked to be somebody who the more heartless amongst us might describe as “one of gods mistakes”. Fueled by chance, his own perseverance and willpower the film shows the inspirational story of what an amazing life this person leads despite having all the wrong cards at the beginning. While Forrest’s ability to stumble into and inspire every other historical figure from Elvis to the guy who created the “have a nice day” smiley face symbol might seem a little silly the film is a wonderful tale which of course isn’t based on any true story and never makes itself out to be so it’s free to take us on whatever wild ride it wishes. Sometimes hilarious, sometimes heartbreaking Forrest Gump teaches us the importance of loyalty, devotion, love and to never give up hope.
1. The Green Mile
And now for something completely different. Something you may have noticed is that the rankings of these films is based on not just how much I appreciate the movie but also on the emotional impact the film had had on me. In that regard few films have effected me as much as The Green Mile, director Frank Darabont’s second adaptation of a Stephen King novel and follow up to The Shawshank Redemption. Tom Hanks plays senior prison guard on death row who befriends a gentle giant with incredible abilities named John Coffey (Michael Clarke Duncan in the role of his life) who has been sentenced to death for the alleged murder of two young children. Arguably the best adaptation of any of Stephen King’s stories this film is one of the most powerfully moving films you’re ever likely to experience and a “horror” story of a different type. A tale of the unspeakable evils which human beings can inflict on each other every single day the film raises the terrifying idea that this world being such as it is really does not deserve miracles.

The Walk Still

Principal photography has wrapped on the inaugural film from Tom Rothman’s TriStar Productions, now officially titled The Walk.  Directed by Robert Zemeckis, the film is a true story based on Philippe Petit’s book “To Reach the Clouds,” starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt as the young dreamer who dared the impossible: an illegal wire walk between the World Trade Center towers.  Zemeckis wrote the screenplay with Christopher Browne. Producers are Steve Starkey, Robert Zemeckis, and Jack Rapke.  The film will be released in Australian cinemas on October 8, 2015 (October 2 in the USA).

 Today is the 40th anniversary of the astounding event, now being brought back to vivid life in the third act climax of the film.

 Twelve people have walked on the moon, but only one man has ever, or will ever, walk in the immense void between the World Trade Center towers.  Guided by his real-life mentor, Papa Rudy (Ben Kingsley), and aided by an unlikely band of international recruits, Petit and his gang overcome long odds, betrayals, dissension and countless close calls to conceive and execute their mad plan.  Robert Zemeckis, the director of such marvels as Forrest Gump, Cast Away, Back to the Future, Polar Express and Flight, again uses cutting edge technology in the service of an emotional, character-driven story.  With innovative photorealistic techniques and IMAX 3D wizardry, The Walk is true big-screen cinema, a chance for moviegoers to viscerally experience the feeling of reaching the clouds. The film is a love letter to Paris and New York City in the 1970s, but most of all, to the Towers of the World Trade Center.

 Also starring in the film are James Badge Dale, Ben Schwartz, Charlotte Le Bon, Clément Sibony and César Domboy.

 The production’s creative team includes director of photography Dariusz Wolski, production designer Naomi Shohan, editor Jeremiah O’Driscoll, and costume designer Suttirat Larlarb. The composer is Alan Silvestri.

 Moviegoers can follow the film on the official movie site at www.thewalkmovie.com, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TheWalkMovie or on Twitter @TheWalkMovie

Tom Hanks

When Oscar nominations have been announced over the years Tom Hanks’ name has been read out five times. He has won two Oscars – one for “Philadelphia” and one for “Forrest Gump” – and been nominated for “Big,” “Saving Private Ryan” and “Cast Away.” The mere fact that he has had his name read out five times shows just what a good actor he is, so what are the best films to sit down and watch if you want to see the best that Tom Hanks has to offer.

“Forrest Gump” (1994) – At a quick glance the film “Forrest Gump” should not have worked. The very idea of taking one character and placing him in the right place to be involved in some of the world’s most historic moments sounds like the kind of script that would be too hard to bring to the screen. That wasn’t the case though when Robert Zemeckis tackled this film, instead he made one of the finest films to ever come out of Hollwood. Aside from Zemeckis’ great work you also have a great performance by Tom Hanks in the title role of Forrest Gump. Hanks brought an air of innocence as he played one of the most lovable simpletons of all time.

“Cast Away” (2000) – Hanks also brought his A-game to another film that on paper looked like it should never have worked. The idea of taking a character and placing them on an island where their only partner in conversation is a volleyball sounds like a boring kind of film, yet once again director Robert Zemeckis was up to the task. A disheveled looking Tom Hanks showed the world exactly what ‘against-type’ acting is all about, while making the scenes between him and Wilson the volleyball the kind that the audience can’t take their eyes away from.

“Saving Mr. Banks” (2013) – It’s hard to imagine that when Tom Hanks was asked to play the legendary Walt Disney in 2013’s “Saving Mr. Banks” that it was the first time that anybody had every portrayed the filmmaker on the big screen. The film followed Walt Disney’s fight to bring the film “Mary Poppins” to the big screen when her creator P.L. Travers (Emma Thompson) sticks her heels in and decides things will be done her way. While Hanks’ pretty much bares no physical resemblance to Disney at all he did capture all of his mannerisms and ended up pulling out one of the surprise performances of the year. With Colin Farrell also putting in a great performance the two men and Thompson made this one of the must see films of the year.

“Captain Phillips” (2013) – Over the years Tom Hanks has revealed himself as one of the finest character actors of all time. In 2013 he was on fire delivering good performances in “Cloud Atlas” and “Saving Mr. Banks” but he saved his best for “Captain Phillips.” Director Paul Greengrass worked hard to bring the true story of Captain Richard Phillips’ clash with Somali pirates to the big screen and his leading man delivered in sensational form. Hanks was great throughout the film, but during the final half an hour of the film he gave every other actor in Hollywood an acting lesson. As the film reaches its tensest moments Hanks turns his acting skills up to a level rarely seen and enhanced the film in a way that had critics unloading the praise.

“Toy Story 3” (2010) – Throughout his career Tom Hanks has played so many unique characters that it is easy to forget that one of his best performances came when he was simply voicing a character. A lot of cinema lovers seem to have forgotten over the years that Hanks has voiced the character of the lovable toy cowboy Woody all throughout the “Toy Story” franchise. When it was announced that “Toy Story 3” was going into production a lot of naysayers decided that this would be one too many “Toy Story” films, but they proved to be completely wrong when the film exceeded all expectations and became a gripping tension filled film for children and adults alike. “Toy Story 3” wasn’t just a good film it became one of the best animated films ever made.

It is hard to sit down and look at Tom Hanks’ film career and pick just a few films that are great to watch. Hanks has built a career on making great films so whenever you see his name on a film poster you know you are about to watch something special.