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As an American actor, director, writer, and producer, Tom Hanks has been a part of over 125 films in his career. For these, he has won over 67 awards with an additional 62 nominations. What sets the 57-year-old Hollywood star apart is his mastery of different genres. He has conquered roles in action, animation, comedy, drama, music, romance, war and more. So which of Hanks roles were his most memorable? Fans and critics have quite a range of opinions on the topic, but there is definitely a set of Hanks’s performances that are more unforgettable than others. His extreme likeability and relaxed attitude as a person and character leads him to his frequent roles as an ordinary man in an extraordinary circumstance. From his first film debut in the low-budget slasher He Knows You’re Alone to his most recent appearances in Cloud Atlas and Saving Mr. Banks, here’s my pick of Tom Hanks’s top ten movies. Let the countdown begin.
10. A League of Their Own
In this 1992 Penny Marshall directed film, Hanks played Jimmy Dugan, a drunken former player turned into the team manager of a newly formed women’s softball team. Set during World War II, Hanks role underscores controversial gender roles of the time in this 1992 comedy. He won an American Comedy Award for Funniest Supporting Actor for this role.
9. That Thing You Do!
Hanks’s self directed, written, and produced, 1996 film That Thing You Do! stars a small town Pennsylvania band that hits it big time with their one hit wonder in the mid 1960s. As Mr. White, Hanks plays the band’s manager, who helps them achieve their short lived success and teaches the members some life lessons on the way.
8. Toy Story
In the animation classic, Toy Story, Hanks plays the voice of Sherriff Woody, favorite toy and best friend of kid owner Andy. He learns to accept new toy, Buzz Lightyear into the inner ring of toys in a story about friendship, struggle, sharing, loyalty, and growing up in the three installments of the Toy Story series, the first filmed back in 1995.
7. The Da Vinci Code
As the character of Robert Langdon in this 2006 flick, Hanks played a Harvard professor interested in religious iconology and specific symbols which lead him to a hunt for the truth when a murder, clues, and hints from Da Vinci paintings point to an ancient secret society which may transform the basis of Christianity as the modern world knew it.
6. Catch Me If You Can
In the true story about con-artist, Frank Abagnale Jr., Hanks played Carl Hanratty, the antagonist responsible for hunting Abagnale Jr., who eventually befriends and works with the con in this 2002 Spielberg film.
5. The Green Mile
In this 1999 film, Hanks plays Paul Edgecomb, a haunted Death Row guard disturbed by the findings of a black man with a gift to show the truth about the charge of which he is accused.
4. Saving Private Ryan
Hanks played the unforgettable Captain Miller in this 1998 film. His character led an eclectic group of U.S. soldiers behind enemy lines to find a paratrooper after the Normandy Landings and, in doing so, witness history.
3. Cast Away
Forced to survive on a deserted island after a tramatic crash, Hanks plays Chuck Noland, a FedEx executive who undergoes physical, mental, and emotional changes to stay afloat in this 2000 film.
2. The Terminal
In another Spielberg directed film, Hanks played eastern immigrant, Viktor Navorski. Unable to return to his war-torn country, Navorski found himself stranded in JFK airport and forced to turn the airport into his home, complete with friends, love interest, and plenty of laughs in the 2004 film.
1. Forrest Gump
In perhaps his most known film, Forrest Gump, Hanks plays a not-so-sharp but whole-hearted Alabama native who makes history on several occasions throughout his life journey chasing his love, Jenny Curran, in the mid-late 1900s. For his performance in this 1994 epic romantic-comedy filled drama, Hanks won an Oscar for Best Actor in a Leading Role, an American Comedy Award for Funniest Actor in a Motion Picture, a Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor, a Dallas-Fort Worth Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor, a Golden Globe for Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture, Kansas City Film Critics Circle Award for Best Actor, a National Board of Review Award for Best Actor, a Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role, a Southeastern Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor, and was nominated for a BAFTA Award for Best Actor, a Chlotrudis Award for Best Actor, a David di Donatello Award for Best Foreign Actor, an MTV Movie Award for Best Male Performance, and a Saturn Award for Best Actor.
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