Tag Archives: Jason Robards

Philadelphia

Daughter and I settled down to some Tom Hanks last night in the belief that Tom Hanks is always good. He was, and what a lesson in history Philadelphia turned out to be. It may have been as recent as 1993, but as far as Daughter was concerned it was the Dark Ages. Tom Hanks is gay, and has Aids, and is sacked from his job. I’m so old that this doesn’t surprise me one bit, wrong as it was. But it’s what things were like. Possibly still are, too often. I don’t know. But for today’s teenager this kind of behaviour proved unbelievably shocking. She cried less over his illness and death than over the unfairness of the system.

I’ve never seen Tom Hanks so thin. Even when younger and slimmer, he always had some puppy roundness to him. He must have starved himself to look so skeletal, for the later stages of Aids. At times he didn’t look like Tom Hanks at all, which is an achievement.

Tom Hanks and Denzel Washington

It’s an American film, so you can work out how it must end, and it does. But it’s still moving. Decided I haven’t seen Joanne Woodward in enough films. She was excellent. And Antonio Banderas was, too, and he had Tom’s lost puppy face.

Interesting to find that a film I’d never heard of until I found it on television and taped it, could be so terrific. I don’t think I’d have got Daughter to watch, if it hadn’t been a Tom Hanks film, but in the end it was the film itself that caught her.

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