The Ultimate Tom Hanks Movie Guide: From ‘Big’ to ‘Elvis’

Ever get cozy on your couch with a bowl of popcorn and think, “It’s a Tom Hanks kind of night?” From hilarious moments in movies like, Big, to those iconic Meg Ryan rom-com’s, Hanks is the guy we’ve all invited into our living rooms for a movie marathon more than once. And what’s a movie collection without a sprinkle of Hanks magic? So, how many movies has Tom Hanks been in?

1. He Knows You’re Alone (1980)

Directed by Armand Mastroianni, this horror film is where it all began for Tom Hanks. The movie revolves around a soon-to-be bride being stalked by a killer the weekend before her wedding. Though not a significant role, it was a crucial start in Hanks’ expansive Hollywood journey.

2. Splash (1984)

A comedy directed by Ron Howard, Splash tells the enchanting tale of a young man who falls in love with a beautiful mermaid, played by Daryl Hannah, he saved as a child. This film was a turning point for Hanks, establishing him as a leading actor in romantic comedies.

3. Bachelor Party (1984)

Directed by Neal Israel, this comedy showcases Tom Hanks in a role that is both humorous and touching. He plays a soon-to-be-married man who finds himself in over his head during a wild bachelor party. His comedic timing paired with the outrageous premise made for a truly memorable movie.

4. The Man with One Red Shoe (1985)

This quirky comedy, directed by Stan Dragoti, stars Hanks as a violinist who gets mistakenly embroiled in CIA intrigue. It’s a delightful mix of humor and suspense, showcasing Hanks’ ability to balance comedy with a touch of drama.

5. Volunteers (1985)

Set against the backdrop of the Peace Corps, this comedy directed by Nicholas Meyer pairs Tom Hanks with Meg Ryan. The duo, with their undeniable chemistry, embark on a comedic adventure in a foreign land.

6. The Money Pit (1986)

A comedic exploration of homeownership’s challenges, The Money Pit, directed by Richard Benjamin, brings laughter and a sense of familiarity. Hanks’ portrayal of a man who buys a seemingly perfect house, only to find it crumbling around him, is both relatable and hilarious.

7. Every Time We Say Goodbye (1986)

This romantic drama, directed by Moshé Mizrahi, stars Hanks as an American pilot in WWII, finding love in Jerusalem with a Sephardic Jew. It beautifully captures moments of joy amidst a backdrop of cultural differences and wartime challenges.

8. Nothing in Common (1986)

Directed by Garry Marshall, this dramedy reveals the struggles of an ad executive (played by Hanks) trying to connect with his estranged father. The narrative masterfully intertwines the realms of personal and professional challenges.

9. Dragnet (1987)

Tom Mankiewicz’s comedic adaptation of the classic crime TV series sees Hanks team up with Dan Aykroyd. This unlikely detective duo keeps the audience laughing as they solve a bizarre mystery in Los Angeles.

10. Big (1988)

A fantasy comedy directed by Penny Marshall, Big showcases Hanks as a young boy who wakes up in an adult’s body. His portrayal of a child navigating the adult world, from working in a toy company to dealing with grown-up relationships, is heartwarming and comedic in equal measure.

11. Punchline (1988)

In David Seltzer’s drama, Hanks delves into the world of stand-up comedy. The film explores the highs and lows, the labors and rewards, of trying to make it big in the comedy circuit.

12. The ‘Burbs (1989)

This dark comedy, directed by Joe Dante, casts Hanks as a suburbanite convinced that his new neighbors are up to no good. It’s a tale of mystery and comedy, blending everyday suburban life with undertones of suspense.

13. Turner & Hooch (1989)

A fun-filled action-comedy directed by Roger Spottiswoode, it sees Hanks paired with a slobbery dog named Hooch. The duo forms an unlikely detective team, navigating crime-solving with a side of comedy.

14. Joe Versus the Volcano (1990)

John Patrick Shanley’s romantic comedy captures the adventures of a man (Hanks) who believes he’s terminally ill. He agrees to jump into a volcano for a businessman, only to find love and purpose along the way. Once again, he teams up with Meg Ryan.

15. The Bonfire of the Vanities (1990)

A film adaptation of Tom Wolfe’s novel, directed by Brian De Palma, it dives deep into the excesses and superficialities of 1980s New York City. Hanks plays a Wall Street tycoon whose life unravels after a hit-and-run accident.

16. A League of Their Own (1992)

Set during World War II, this comedy-drama directed by Penny Marshall focuses on the formation of the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League. Hanks shines as the tough, yet endearing team manager.

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17. Sleepless in Seattle (1993)

Directed by Nora Ephron, this romantic comedy pairs Hanks with Meg Ryan once again. The tale of a widowed father and a reporter who fall in love through a radio show is both touching and charming. Seattle, in all its glory, plays a significant role in their unfolding love story.

18. Philadelphia (1993)

In one of his most powerful roles, Hanks portrays a gay lawyer diagnosed with AIDS who sues his firm for discrimination. Directed by Jonathan Demme, the film poignantly addresses issues of prejudice and fear surrounding the AIDS epidemic. Denzel Washington also stars. Hanks won an Oscar for Best Actor for his role in Philadelphia.

19. Forrest Gump (1994)

Directed by Robert Zemeckis, this drama traces the life of Forrest Gump, played brilliantly by Hanks. Through historical events and personal milestones, Forrest’s journey is a heartfelt tale of love, loss and destiny.

20. Apollo 13 (1995)

Recreating the perilous journey of the Apollo 13 mission, this film, directed by Ron Howard, has Hanks leading an ensemble cast that includes Bill Paxton and Kevin Bacon. They brilliantly capture the intense and emotional journey of astronauts facing near-certain doom.

21. Toy Story (1995)

In this animated classic directed by John Lasseter, Hanks gives voice to Sheriff Woody, a cowboy toy facing obsolescence. This Pixar creation masterfully taps into themes of change, jealousy, and friendship.

22. That Thing You Do! (1996)

Directed by Tom Hanks himself, this comedy captures the rise and fall of a 1960s rock band. Filled with catchy tunes and nostalgic charm, it showcases Hanks’ talents not just as an actor but also as a filmmaker.

23. Saving Private Ryan (1998)

Directed by film director Steven Spielberg, this war epic showcases Hanks as Captain John Miller, tasked with saving Private Ryan during WWII. The harrowing depiction of the Normandy landings is a stark reminder of the sacrifices made during the war.

24. You’ve Got Mail (1998)

Reuniting Hanks and Meg Ryan, this romantic comedy directed by Nora Ephron uses the early days of the internet as a backdrop. It’s a delightful modern retelling of the classic tale of two enemies unknowingly falling in love.

25. Toy Story 2 (1999)

Sequels can be challenging, but under John Lasseter’s direction, this film thrives. Sheriff Woody finds himself stolen and meets a new group of toys, while Buzz Lightyear and the gang embark on a mission to save him.

26. The Green Mile (1999)

Based on Stephen King’s novel, this fantasy crime drama directed by Frank Darabont sees Hanks as a prison guard who encounters a unique inmate, played by Michael Clarke Duncan, with supernatural powers. The film beautifully intertwines themes of hope, faith, and redemption.

27. Cast Away (2000)

Directed by Robert Zemeckis, this drama portrays Hanks as a man stranded on an uninhabited island. With only a volleyball named Wilson for company, he faces challenges, both physical and emotional, in his quest for survival.

28. Road to Perdition (2002)

Set in the 1930s, this crime thriller directed by Sam Mendes follows Hanks as a mob enforcer seeking vengeance against those who wronged him. It’s a gripping tale of loyalty, betrayal, and fatherhood.

29. Catch Me If You Can (2002)

Another collaboration with Steven Spielberg, this biographical crime film portrays Hanks as FBI agent, Carl Hanratty, in pursuit of a young con artist, played by Leonardo DiCaprio. It’s a captivating cat-and-mouse chase filled with wit and charm.

30. The Terminal (2004)

Spielberg directs this comedy-drama that showcases Hanks as a man stranded in New York’s JFK International Airport due to a political upheaval in his home country.

31. The Polar Express (2004)

In this animated Christmas film directed by Robert Zemeckis, Hanks voices multiple characters. It’s a magical journey to the North Pole, emphasizing the importance of belief and wonder.

32. The Da Vinci Code (2006)

Based on Dan Brown’s bestselling novel, this mystery thriller directed by Ron Howard casts Hanks as Robert Langdon, a symbologist racing against time to solve a religious mystery. The narrative masterfully blends historical facts, conspiracies, and thrilling chase sequences.

33. Charlie Wilson’s War (2007)

Directed by Mike Nichols, this biographical drama sees Hanks as a congressman who plays a pivotal role in aiding Afghan rebels during the Soviet-Afghan War. It’s an insightful look into political machinations and their far-reaching consequences.

34. The Great Buck Howard (2008)

In this comedy-drama directed by Sean McGinly, Hanks plays a minor role as the father of a law school dropout who starts working for a has-been magician. The film humorously explores the realm of minor fame and personal aspirations.

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35. Angels & Demons (2009)

The sequel to The Da Vinci Code, directed by Ron Howard, sees Robert Langdon (Hanks) on a new adventure, unraveling a plot against the Vatican. Filled with puzzles and heart-pounding moments, it’s a worthy successor.

36. Toy Story 3 (2010)

Directed by Lee Unkrich, this emotional installment sees Woody, Buzz, and their toy companions facing an uncertain future as their owner grows up. The narrative poignantly deals with themes of change, loss, and the passage of time.

37. Larry Crowne (2011)

Co-written and directed by Tom Hanks, this romantic comedy casts him as a middle-aged man who goes back to college after losing his job. There, he forms an unexpected bond with a public speaking professor, played by Julia Roberts.

38. Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close (2011)

Based on Jonathan Safran Foer’s novel, directed by Stephen Daldry, this drama sees Hanks in a supporting role as the father of a boy trying to make sense of the events following the September 11 attacks. It’s a touching exploration of grief and loss.

39. Cloud Atlas (2012)

This ambitious science fiction film, directed by Tom Tykwer and the Wachowskis, interweaves multiple stories spanning different eras. Hanks plays multiple roles, showcasing his versatility as an actor.

40. Captain Phillips (2013)

Directed by Paul Greengrass, this biographical drama recounts the true story of Captain Richard Phillips, played by Hanks, and the 2009 hijacking of his ship by Somali pirates. The film offers a gripping and realistic portrayal of a harrowing ordeal.

41. Saving Mr. Banks (2013)

This biographical drama directed by John Lee Hancock casts Hanks as Walt Disney, trying to obtain the rights for “Mary Poppins” from its author, P.L. Travers. It’s a delightful exploration of the making of another major motion picture masterpiece.

42. Bridge of Spies (2015)

Teaming up with Steven Spielberg again, this historical drama sees Hanks as an insurance lawyer tasked with negotiating a prisoner exchange during the Cold War. The film masterfully captures the political tensions of the era.

43. A Hologram for the King (2016)

Directed by Tom Tykwer, this comedic drama based on Dave Eggers’ novel showcases Hanks as a struggling businessman trying to secure a deal in Saudi Arabia. It’s a captivating reflection on globalization, personal failures, and cultural differences.

44. Sully (2016)

In this biographical film directed by Clint Eastwood, Hanks portrays Captain Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger, the pilot who landed a damaged plane on the Hudson River, saving all aboard. The narrative delves deep into the aftermath of the event and the subsequent investigation.

45. Inferno (2016)

The third installment in the Robert Langdon series directed by Ron Howard, Inferno, sees Hanks unraveling a mystery tied to Dante Alighieri’s “Inferno.” With a threat against humanity looming, Langdon races against time to prevent global catastrophe.

46. The Post (2017)

Directed by Steven Spielberg, this historical drama casts Hanks as Ben Bradlee, the executive editor of The Washington Post during its coverage of the Pentagon Papers. Meryl Streep also stars. It’s a gripping narrative on press freedom and political accountability.

47. The Circle (2017)

Based on Dave Eggers’ novel, directed by James Ponsoldt, this techno-thriller casts Hanks as the charismatic leader of a tech company that promotes total transparency. However, beneath the utopian vision lies a disturbing surveillance state reality.

48. Toy Story 4 (2019)

Directed by Josh Cooley, this installment finds Sheriff Woody facing new challenges in an unfamiliar environment. Themes of identity, purpose, and the passage of time resonate throughout the film.

49. A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood (2019)

Based on the life of Fred Rogers, directed by Marielle Heller, Hanks brilliantly captures the essence of the beloved TV personality. The film is a touching tribute to a man who impacted countless lives with his message of kindness.

Tom Hanks as Mr. Rogers
50. Greyhound (2020)

Directed by Aaron Schneider, this WWII naval drama casts Hanks as a US Navy officer leading a convoy of ships through U-boat-infested waters. The tension-filled narrative captures the challenges faced by naval officers during wartime.

51. ELVIS (2022)

In the movie Elvis, Tom Hanks plays the role of Colonel Tom Parker, the enigmatic and controversial manager of the legendary singer Elvis Presley. Hanks’ portrayal of Parker, depicts him as both a shrewd businessman and a manipulative figure who played a significant role in both the rise and the fall of Elvis’s career.