Tom Hanks in Captain Phillips (2013)

Tom Hanks has had such a lengthy career as a leading man, portraying himself in a variety of roles that truly can classify him as a versatile actor. Tom Hanks has never been shy from exploring roles that challenge the human psyche, starring in roles such as Cast Away or Philadelphia; roles that conveyed physical and emotional isolation. What places Captain Phillips among the ranks of being one of Hanks’ best performance was the mere fact that this was the first performance from Hanks where he was the leading actor, yet his character had no control throughout the film. Starring as true-life Richard Phillips, who was taken hostage by Somali pirates, Hanks’ performance is careful and controlled, truly creating the impression he has been taken hostage, terrified for his life, but trying to maintain a calm exterior throughout. It’s perhaps the closest Tom Hanks has had come to acting that bordered on realism.

Tom Hanks was nominated for every precursor leading to the Oscars: The BAFTA, Golden Globe, and SAG, which caused many to think this would be his first Oscar nomination in 13 years (his last was Cast Away in 2000). Yet when the nominations were announced, Hanks was snubbed in favor for the overrated performance from Bruce Dern in Nebraska, which was a nomination done more out of nostalgia than performance since Nebraska was a comeback performance from Dern. This Oscar snub will forever be one of the Academy’s biggest nomination mistakes.

For more details on Tom Hanks’ performance, CLICK HERE to read an Acting Spotlight feature that contains a deeper analysis of the role.

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