The Tom Hanks Debate

#1

n_huffhines

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#1
I've always been a little hesitant to voice this opinion, because I know he is so well-loved. I love him too. But I believe that Tom Hanks skill as an actor is wildly overrated. I finally feel emboldened to start this thread because they had this debate on the Rewatchables pod:

‘Catch Me If You Can’ With Bill Simmons, Chris Ryan, and Sean Fennessey

They discuss it at about the 1:04:00 mark.

Flat out, I do not trust him with accents at all. I love Hanks in Big, and Saving Private Ryan, etc. when he's playing middle America. Castaway is an amazing performance. Hanks is an elite actor, but the range just isn't there to put him in the GOAT convo for me, and I think most people have him in that convo, if not the GOAT.

I can't think of an accent he's done that I can confidently say is good. Forrest Gump was questionable. The Terminal was questionable. Catch Me If You Can was an homage to Dragnet, which was not good acting. Charlie Wilson's War = bad. Pinnochio = he's nominated for the Razzy. Mr. Rogers = bad.
 
#2
#2
I’d put him in the category of Jack Nicholson. Great actor who plays himself. Matthew McConaughey would be another.
 
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#3
#3
Not with ya here. Hanks is one of the best of all time.

Now the current GOAT from an acting standpoint is 100% Brad Pitt. Followed closely by Daniel Day Lewis and Joaquin Phoenix.
 
#4
#4
Not with ya here. Hanks is one of the best of all time.

Now the current GOAT from an acting standpoint is 100% Brad Pitt. Followed closely by Daniel Day Lewis and Joaquin Phoenix.

Replace Pitt with DiCaprio and you have a pretty solid list.

I love Tom Hanks but he has started to become a caricatures of himself. I don’t see Hanks in a trailer and automatically want to see it but at the same time his presence lends some authority to the movie. Total body of work definitely elevated him to a conversation of elite actors.

By the way… I was really concerned what this debate was going to be about 😬
 
#5
#5
Replace Pitt with DiCaprio and you have a pretty solid list.

I love Tom Hanks but he has started to become a caricatures of himself. I don’t see Hanks in a trailer and automatically want to see it but at the same time his presence lends some authority to the movie. Total body of work definitely elevated him to a conversation of elite actors.

By the way… I was really concerned what this debate was going to be about 😬

I love DiCaprio, but no way he gets the nod over Pitt. Pitt may get typecasted a lot, but that dude can nail any role.
 
#6
#6
I’d put him in the category of Jack Nicholson. Great actor who plays himself. Matthew McConaughey would be another.


Morgan Freeman and Sean Connery also come to mind. I enjoyed Forrest Gump, Green Mile, Saving Private Ryan and Mr Rogers to name a few... However, I also have to agree that he doesn't have a lot of range when it comes to playing different people.
 
#7
#7
I love DiCaprio, but no way he gets the nod over Pitt. Pitt may get typecasted a lot, but that dude can nail any role.

What Pitt performance are you going to put over Leo in Blood Diamond, Aviator, or The Departed?

C’mon now.
 
#8
#8
What Pitt performance are you going to put over Leo in Blood Diamond, Aviator, or The Departed?

C’mon now.

Pitt in Snatch was unbelievable. Also Fury and Benjamin Button, I would say all 3 of those are stronger than Blood Diamond or Departed.

Aviator I'll give you though, that was world class acting.
 
#9
#9
Pitt in Snatch was unbelievable. Also Fury and Benjamin Button, I would say all 3 of those are stronger than Blood Diamond or Departed.

Aviator I'll give you though, that was world class acting.

Snatch over Blood Diamond?

Sir, I believe we are at an impasse.
 
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#11
#11
I love DiCaprio, but no way he gets the nod over Pitt. Pitt may get typecasted a lot, but that dude can nail any role.

Pitt is a great character actor, but he's actually not a great leading man. He's got all-time great leading man looks, but he's just an average performer. He is the Billy Beane of actors. Everybody wants him to be a leading man when they see him, but he's not that good at it. This is why he was so obsessed with Moneyball and getting that movie made.
 
#12
#12
I did remember a Hanks accent I liked, which was Ladykillers. The whole tone of the movie was cartoonish, so Hanks' being over the top was a perfect fit.
 
#13
#13
I did remember a Hanks accent I liked, which was Ladykillers. The whole tone of the movie was cartoonish, so Hanks' being over the top was a perfect fit.

It worked in Ladykillers, but didn't in the Elvis movie. He sounded ridiculous.

Side note, the fact that Ladykillers is likely the worst Coen Brothers film is a testament to their quality over the years.
 
#14
#14
It worked in Ladykillers, but didn't in the Elvis movie. He sounded ridiculous.

Side note, the fact that Ladykillers is likely the worst Coen Brothers film is a testament to their quality over the years.

I actually really like Ladykillers. I think it's pretty funny.

I haven't seen Elvis, but that's what I hear.
 
#16
#16
I enjoyed it too but I'd be hard pressed to put it above any of their others. They just have too many bangers.


Yeah. I haven't been crazy about any of their last few movies. Buster Scruggs was pretty good. A Serious Man is the last one that I thought was great (I may be forgetting something).

If you're talking their widely-known library, then yeah, it's near the bottom, but if you're talking everything (Blood Simple, Barton Fink, The Man Who Wasn't There, etc.) then I would say it's more towards the middle of the pack. Those are better works of art but Ladykillers is much more rewatchable.

And I can't do Hudsucker Proxy. I loved it the first time I saw it back in the day, but on a recent rewatch, I couldn't handle JJL. So annoying.
 
#17
#17
Yeah. I haven't been crazy about any of their last few movies. Buster Scruggs was pretty good. A Serious Man is the last one that I thought was great (I may be forgetting something).

If you're talking their widely-known library, then yeah, it's near the bottom, but if you're talking everything (Blood Simple, Barton Fink, The Man Who Wasn't There, etc.) then I would say it's more towards the middle of the pack. Those are better works of art but Ladykillers is much more rewatchable.

And I can't do Hudsucker Proxy. I loved it the first time I saw it back in the day, but on a recent rewatch, I couldn't handle JJL. So annoying.

I'd put Hudsucker right there with Ladykillers. I actually really love their older, less known ones like Barton Fink and Blood Simple.
 
#18
#18
I'd put Hudsucker right there with Ladykillers. I actually really love their older, less known ones like Barton Fink and Blood Simple.

I enjoyed them, I just don't find them to be all that re-watchable. It's about time on Blood Simple. Been almost 20 years.
 
#19
#19
Not with ya here. Hanks is one of the best of all time.

Now the current GOAT from an acting standpoint is 100% Brad Pitt. Followed closely by Daniel Day Lewis and Joaquin Phoenix.

Pitt over DDL? No way. Pitt doesn't have close to the range DDL had.
 
#20
#20
It worked in Ladykillers, but didn't in the Elvis movie. He sounded ridiculous.

Side note, the fact that Ladykillers is likely the worst Coen Brothers film is a testament to their quality over the years.
Not while Hail Caesar existed.
 
#21
#21
Pitt is a great character actor, but he's actually not a great leading man. He's got all-time great leading man looks, but he's just an average performer. He is the Billy Beane of actors. Everybody wants him to be a leading man when they see him, but he's not that good at it. This is why he was so obsessed with Moneyball and getting that movie made.

This is the weirdest take I have ever read
 
#22
#22
I miss the 80’s comedic Tom Hanks, The Burbs I love that movie and Big, Dragnet and Turner and Hooch. Then he got more serious in the 90’s but I guess it paid off for him he won two Oscars.
 
#23
#23
This is the weirdest take I have ever read

It's pretty spot on. Think of all of his most famous/praised roles. He's either a side character or part of an ensemble sharing the screen time with other stars. He's obviously a great actor but he's not a leading man in the way that someone like DiCaprio is.
 
#25
#25
It's pretty spot on. Think of all of his most famous/praised roles. He's either a side character or part of an ensemble sharing the screen time with other stars. He's obviously a great actor but he's not a leading man in the way that someone like DiCaprio is.
Fight Club, Snatch, Oceans, Inglorious Basterds, Moneyball,...Hollywood, Seven, ... and I think he was in a couple big Rom-Coms too.
 
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