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MOVIE REVIEWS: CAPTAIN PHILLIPS

October 11, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

The same critics who focused on the technical wonders of Gravity last week are directing their praise on the performance of Tom Hanks and the direction Paul Greenglass in Captain Phillips this week. Tom Hanks, no stranger to praise for his past performances, gets some of the strongest applause he has received in a long while for his portrayal of the title character whose ship is taken over by Somali pirates. As Kenneth Turan puts it in the Los Angeles Times: “Another highlight in Tom Hanks’ Americana gallery, the story of a seemingly regular guy who turns out to be something more than a regular guy, thus giving hope to regular guys everywhere. As Kenneth Turan puts it in the Los Angeles Times: “As good as Hanks has been in the past, there are moments here, especially near the conclusion, that are deeper and more emotional than anything we’ve seen from this actor before.” Writes Manohla Dargis in the New York Times: “Mr. Hanks is one of the few movie stars who, like Gary Cooper once upon a Hollywood time, can convey a sense of old-fashioned American decency just by standing in the frame. There’s something so unforced about him that it can seem as if he’s not delivering a performance, just being Tom Hanks.” Other critics suggest that Hanks is a shoo-in for an Oscar nomination. “Another highlight in Tom Hanks’ Americana gallery,” writes Mick LaSalle in the San Francisco Chronicle. “The story of a seemingly regular guy who turns out to be something more than a regular guy, thus giving hope to regular guys everywhere.” Greenglass, too, receives an equal amount of acclaim. The director, writes Michael Phillips in the Chicago Tribune, “sees the world as a complicated place; his preferred, jabbing editing rhythms and camera proximity ensure that audiences experience it the same way.” Writing about a scene in which the pirates begin boarding the ship, Peter Howell in the Toronto Star observes, “It’s in such furious moments where director Greengrass outclasses all rivals.” And Ty Burr in the Boston Globe comments that Greengrass “creates an aura of urgency so compelling, so rooted in detail, that we temporarily forget what we know and hold our breaths for two-plus hours of tightening suspense.” All in all, concludes Lou Lumenick in the New York Post, Captain Phillips is “one of the year’s best films.”