No one reading this story wants Tom Hanks to go anywhere anytime soon. A person is a national treasure. He has entertained us for decades in the best films ever made, and hopefully will continue to entertain us for decades to come. But there’s no denying the fact that his last few films, from Finch to Elvis, have moved closer to the darker reality of death, and that streak continues in his latest film, A Man Named Otto. As you could see in the trailer for the movie, Otto (Hanks) is a miser who also runs his neighbors’ business. But, as you will find out, there is a sadness in Otto that moves the film forward in an unexpected way.
Tom Hanks returned to ReelBlend, the official CinemaBlend film podcast, this week and talked a lot about the legacy. Now, if you know Hanks at all (and we were lucky enough to dive deep into his filmography in the past), he doesn’t want to waste time thinking about the past. But he loves to discuss crafts. This man has been making movies for most of his life and has worked with all the great people.
But talking about “A Man named Otto,” one of several upcoming adaptations of the book to the film, made him think, and we plunged down the rabbit hole, talking about one of his favorite films, which, in his opinion, is overlooked: “Sam Mendes.” The road to perdition. And in that conversation, Hanks talked about two titles from his career that he hopes will be remembered as the industry celebrates his incredible legacy. As he told the hosts of ReelBlend:
You know, in the legacy field, if someone were to say to me, “Hey, Tom, right after you die for real…” which won’t happen for a while, right, staff? It won’t be for a while. “Would you like to organize a film festival of your works?” And what would happen if someone else chose the films? It will just be hits. You know, the ones that play every Christmas. But in fact, I would say that there are a number of things that I have to go back to and delve into the realm of what I considered presence and authenticity. It was very, very, very characteristic of these particular characters in these particular films. If you had to ask me for five films, to be honest, one of them would be “What You Do”, because as far as I understand, it is filled with joy. And I hope I’ll have a bunch more movies that I can still make that may or may not be there. But I would say that “The Road to Perdition” would be one of those where I would just have to say, “Please look at how quiet it is here.” You know? “Please look at the silence.”
Unfortunately, in the grand scheme of Tom Hanks’ incredible work, this “Cursed Path” is overlooked because he does an INCREDIBLE job in a story about a gangster trying to protect his young son from joining his father’s work. In addition to the presence of Hanks, the cast of the film includes a very young and promising Daniel Craig, Jude Law and the iconic Paul Newman in one of his last screen roles. It was directed by Sam Mendes (Skyfall, 1917), and the legendary cameraman Conrad Hall became the cameraman. So yes, it’s a stone cold classic, and more people should watch it. I just double-checked. It airs on Netflix. Come and see.
And, of course, “What You Do” will be another choice of Tom Hanks, both because it is a wonderful film and because it became his directorial debut, so it will always hold a special place in his heart. But Tom Hanks isn’t ready to talk about legacy. Not quite. As we speak, he has a new movie in theaters. “A Man named Otto” remakes a Swedish film and adapts it for an American audience, but gives Hanks a meaningful role that he completely elevates. Our full interview with Tom Hanks can be viewed below:
For a while there was talk that Otto attracted Hanks to a crowded conversation for the best actor, but it seems that his colleague in the film “Elvis” Austin Butler, Brendan Fraser from “The Whale” and Colin Farrell from “Banshee from Inisherin” closed it. However, “A Man named Otto” is very much worth your time, so go to the cinemas and watch it.