Tom Hanks Month #4: Apollo 13, The Terminal

Apollo 13

As one of the most exciting adventure movies of the year 1995, Apollo 13 is a master piece that was produced to prove that a science history movie can be able to match and surpass any science fiction movie. Inspired by the Apollo 13 expedition, Apollo 13 is not only classy but also, a brilliantly directed docu-drama that is considered by many to be a nail biter. As a real life techno thriller, Apollo 13 is a movie that was able to condense the lurid fantasies that were written by fiction written such as Tom Clancy to ground zero.

Directed by the critically acclaimed Ron Howard, Apollo 13 is a recreation of the events that occurred on April 11th 1970 that almost left 3 astronauts, Jack Swigert, Fred Haise and Jim Lovell, lost forever in space. Unlike any science history movie, Apollo 13 has the aptitude of sweeping the viewers into a definitive fear of flying conundrum. Playing Jim Lovell, Tom Hanks is continuing to win the hearts of many especially after his award winning performances in Forrest Gramp and Philadelphia. All in all, Hanks’ sterling performance in this movie would not have been possible without the outstanding performances from Kevin Bacon and Bill Paxton.

With a running time of 140 minutes, Apollo 13 undeniably amalgamates stunning special effects with historic footages which in turn captures the balletic beauty of the crafts maneuvers, the grandeur liftoff and finally the giddy goofiness during the initial moments of the weightlessness. Regardless as to whether you know how the events were going to turn out, Apollo 13 is an amazing journey that is not only harrowing but also exhilarating.

The Terminal

As a movie that was produced to entertain any viewer, the Terminal is not only a gentle movie but also quite hilarious at times. Like all the others Steven Spielberg’s creations, The Terminal is a magnum opus through which Spielberg was able to create a Capra-esque sensibility and a sense of humanity that unfortunately most comedies lack. Through this creation, Spielberg is able to bring to life human characters that movie goers can be able to feel sorry for and love.

In this movie, Tom Hanks plays one Viktor Navorski who happens to be a native of Eastern Europe. On landing at the JFK airport from Eastern Europe, Viktor encounters a series of unfortunate events. First of all, his passport does not pass the custom desk hence he is to be escorted back to his home country by one Frank Dixon. While aboard the flight, he is told that his native country has fallen under a military coup and the country’s government has imploded. Hence, he is trapped at the international lounge of the airport. How long is it going to last? Is he going to go home? Only time will tell. Other familiar faces in the movie includes; Stanely Tucci who plays Frank Dixon, Catherine Zeta Jones who plays Amelia Warren and finally Zoe Saldana who plays Doleros Torress.

As an odd fable, the Terminal is a feel good comedy that is totally different from your day to day comedy film. The performances from the star studded cast is exceptional while the directing from Steven Spielberg is undeniably one of a kind.


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