One-time Oscar nominee Paul Greengrass (“United 93”) directed this tense thriller and Tom Hanks is getting some of the best notices of his long career for his portrayal of real-life hero Rich Phillips who stood up to Somali pirates in 2009.
The two-time Academy Award champ looks like a lock to land at least a Best Actor bid. He is currently in fourth place on our leaderboard, with odds of 15/2. But don’t underestimate this old-hand at the Oscars game. Were he to win, Hanks would match last year’s achievement by Daniel Day-Lewis who became the first three-time Best Actor winner (putting him one behind all-time leader Katharine Hepburn).
Well-liked, Hanks is a Hollywood mainstay and has served as an academy governor for years. He last contended for “Castaway” in 2000, losing to Russell Crowe (“Gladiator”). With this new film, the actor delivers a powerhouse performance. After dominating the action in “Captain Phillips” for a tense two hours, Hanks has a quiet moment at the end of the picture that is so simple and yet so memorable.
Could that be enough to keep 1980 directing champ Robert Redford (“Ordinary People”) from claiming his first acting Oscar for “All is Lost”? Or will newcomer Chiwetel Ejiofor prevail for Best Picture frontrunner “12 Years a Slave“?
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