Tom Hanks is a two time Academy Award winning Best Actor and has won a shitload of other acting awards. His movies have grossed a bajillion dollars.
The following considers some of Hanks' most notable films.
While the 80's consisted of a few Hank gems, most of his 80's films, for lack of a better phrase, fucking sucked.
Tom Hanks' first major role was in Splash, alongside a then-arguably attractive Darryl Hannah. This movie centered around mermaids. Splash's success catapulted Hanks to early stardom. He immediately fucked that up by starring in 1984's Bachelor Party. For the record, Bachelor Party features a donkey overdosing on cocaine. Fact.
Redeeming himself in 1988 after a slew of horseshit, Hanks starred in Big. In this classic comedy, Hanks plays a 13 year old who wakes up as a grown man. For those who have not watched Big, you know it as the movie with the "two guys dancing-on-the-giant-keyboard" scene shown in annoying classic movie montages all the time. Basically, Big is the original and less shitty version of 13 Going on 30.
Hanks and that other character actor guy in Big
Moviegoers began to realize that perhaps Tom Hanks DID offer something to humanity. He again fucked up that notion by starring in yet another slew of horseshit lasting the remainder of the 80's and into the early 90's. One 5 second exeption to this time period is when Hanks famously quotes "There's no crying in baseball" in A League of Their own, an otherwise piece of shit.
While Tom Hanks starred in generally good movies throughout the 90's, the back-to-back shit storm of Joe Versus the Volcano and The Bonfire of the Vanities cancels out about 67% of 90's movie credit for Hanks.
Suddenly, in 1993, Hanks then decided to stop making shitty movies. Presumably, this is because he fired whatever moron of an agent he had. Hanks won his first Acadamy Award in 1993 for Philadelphia, in which he dramatically portrayed a homosexual with HIV and presumably had anal sex with a hairy Antonio Banderas.
All of Hanks' past offenses to pop culture were ultimately forgiven when he starred in 1994's Forrest Gump, in which he also won an Academy Award for Best Actor. Obviously, the Academy was orgasming over him. His win continued the "didn't go full retard" win streak as referenced in Tropic Thunder. Forrest Gump also won numerous other Oscars including Best Picture.
Hanks in Forrest Gump, running not quite like a retard.
Hanks followed up with Apollo 13, in which three astronauts go into space and manage to fuck up their mission as much as humanly possible.
Next, Hanks then voiced Woody in Toy Story, and again in 1999 for Toy Story 2. Movie critics around the world got a woody for these films. Toy Story 3 is due in 2010, and will likely make a fuckload of money.
In 1996, Hanks gave writing and directing a shot which churned out That Thing You Do!. Critics loved the movie, but nobody other than critics actually watched it. This is not unsimilar to most good movies. Many theorists feel the exclamation point and the end of the title was responsible for this. Ninety-five percent of the time, an exclamation point at the end of a title equals a piece of shit.
In 1998, Hanks starred in Saving Private Ryan. This would have won Best Picture, but due to what must have been a tally fuck up, Shakespeare in Love won. Saving Private Ryan is known as a great World War II film in which Hanks manages to get most of an army squad killed trying to rescue one guy named Private Ryan. He actually seemed quite badass when he blew up a tank with a pistol, until you learned it was actually a plane that blew the tank up, and then Tom Hanks proceeded to die like a pussy.
Hanks, to the Academy, after finding out Shakespeare In Love won Best Picture
Next, Hanks starred in the "dickhead falls in love with a whiny bitch" romantic comedy You've Got Mail. Apparently, after someone watched Joe Versus the Volcano and Sleepless in Seattle, they thought it would be a good idea to team up Hanks and Meg Ryan again. By some miracle, however, the film was actually considered enjoyable. Hanks continued to excel in movies, while Ryan has yet to make another good one.
Hanks rounded out the decade with The Green Mile. Here, Hanks plays a prison guard who manages to portray the pain and frustration of not being able to urinate. Oh, he also allows an innocent man to be executed.
In one of his prominent roles, Hanks starred in Cast Away, which centers around the deserted island romance between Hanks and his volleyball Wilson for four years. Hanks is on screen alone for most of the movie and performs survival tasks such as dentistry. He famously refuses to open a package which director Robert Zemekis later stated contained a "Solar GPS Cell Phone." Nice going Hanks. Hanks was nominated for an Oscar and won a Golden Globe for the role.
In 2002, Hanks starred in Road to Perdition playing a badass mafioso out for vengeance for his wife and son's murder. The film's highlight shows Tom Hanks unloading an entire fucking Tommygun into Paul Newman's torso, something we have all wanted to do to Paul Newmen in our lifetime. All badass-ness is lost when Hanks allows Jude Law to sneak in his sanctuary and shoot him so he can take pictures of his body, presumably to masturbate to. When Hanks' son walks in the room and is too much of a pussy to shoot Jude Law, someone else we have all wanted to shoot, Hanks kills Jude Law.
In 2004, Hanks starred in Spielberg's The Terminal where he plays some dude from a made up country who lives in an airport terminal for 18 years. Why? Who gives a shit, it's Tom mutherfuckin' Hanks. This is impressive considering most cannot tolerate being in an airport for more than 3 seconds. Unfortunately, the only people interested in watching this boring ass movie were people who see a Hanks or Spielberg film for the sake of it being a Hanks or Spielberg film.
2004 also saw Hanks in The Polar Express (animated). Taking a cue from Eddie Murphy, Hanks fucked a ton of voice actors out of a job when he decided to voice almost the entire cast. I guess when your Tom motherfuckin' Hanks, you can do that.
In 2006, Hanks starred in The Da Vinci Code. Apart from the book, this movie is solely known for Tom Hanks' unprecedented, disgusting, distractingly bad mullet. Yes, a mullet as in "business in the front, party in the back." Hanks effectively 1-upped Nicholas Cage in National Treasure and Mark Wahlberg in The Departed and took the "what the fuck was he thinking" worst movie hairdu of all time. This record has not, and probably will not, ever be broken. Luckily for its sequel, Angels & Demons, Hanks took a hint and got rid of the party in the back. Unfortunately, this gave 75% of moviegoers no reason to watch the film.
Hanks with his WTF mullet
Hanks caused outrage again when, in Charlie Wilson's War, he cause a worldwide surge in vommitting by taking off his clothes in an unwarranted and unprecedented nude scene. It featured a Hanks ass-shot, apparently something America was not willing to embrace from one of its most beloved actors. Also, his awkwardly droopy nipples did not help the situation. Seriosuly, watch the movie and look at those nipples. Hanks, similar to Harvey Keitel and Kathy Bates, seemed to feel that his career would not be complete without a nude scene.
In summary, Tom Hanks is undoubtably one of the most respected actors in America with an overall respectable resume. He is the man to hire when you know your movie sucks. This is not to say all of his movies suck. Quite contrarily, this is mostly because his screen presence almost guarantees at least $100,000,000 in box office gross.