Tom Hanks has been a beloved Hollywood star for so long that it sounds like a fact-checking error when you read that he hasn’t been nominated for an Oscar in 12 years. During an historic stretch that spanned from A League of Their Own to Cast Away, Hanks could do no wrong, winning two Academy Awards and starring in 10 movies that topped $100 million. But his last decade’s highlights have been animated films, a Dan Brown franchise, and the HBO historical epics that he’s produced; his last few starring vehicles underachieved.
Notable recent movies: Box-office gross, (Metacritic/Rotten Tomatoes)
Cloud Atlas (2012): $27.1 million, (55/66)
Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close (2011): $31.8 million, (46/47)
Larry Crowne (2011): $35.6 million, (41/35)
Angels & Demons (2009): $133.4 million, (48/37)
Charlie Wilson’s War (2007): $66.7 million, (69/81)
That downward trend might change this fall, as Hanks has two promising movies that are being heralded as a return to form. In Saving Mr. Banks (Dec. 20), he stars as Walt Disney during the mogul’s contentious courtship of children’s author P.L. Travers (Emma Thompson) to adapt Mary Poppins into a movie. In Captain Phillips, which opens Friday, he plays another real-life person: Richard Phillips, the captain of the hijacked Maesk Alabama who was kidnapped and held ransom by Somali pirates in 2009. Phillips’ sensational story felt like a movie as it was unfolding in 2009, and in the hands of director Paul Greengrass (United 93), it retains that thrilling moment-to-moment intensity.
With Captain Phillips, the critics are back in his corner, with EW’s Owen Gleiberman writing that Hanks “acts with a minimalism that speaks volumes: We’re wired into his every glance.”
Before you head to the theater, click below to see what other prominent critics are saying about Captain Phillips. READ FULL STORY