Picks and Pans Review: Nothing in Common

updated 08/11/1986 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 08/11/1986 AT 01:00 AM EDT

Tom Hanks is one of the most bankable, likable and funny young comic actors around. He can turn a mediocre comedy into a good one; to wit, Volunteers and Bachelor Party. But the Shakespearean-trained actor says he would like to get away from comedy. A third of the way through this movie, he makes his departure. The drama comes in when Hanks's mother, played by Eva Marie Saint, walks out on husband Jackie Gleason after 36 years of marriage. They each turn to Hanks for support, disrupting his life and driving him nuts in the process. Things start getting heavy when Saint says, "It took every ounce of courage to walk out that door." The movie completes its 180-degree turn when Gleason becomes seriously ill. There are some touching scenes between Hanks, who makes the switch to the dramatic look easy, and Gleason, who's splendid as a cantankerous, unsympathetic womanizer. Still the movie is best in its pure Hanksy-panky first half. The architecture of the Chicago locations and a pleasing sound track help supply the atmosphere as Hanks, an advertising executive, tries to woo a new client and the client's daughter, sexy Sela (The Man Who Loved Women) Ward, at the same time. And director Garry (The Flamingo Kid) Marshall seems more at home with the comedy. As Ward says to a befuddled Hanks after a one-night stand, "It was nice but let's not make a Wagnerian opera out of it." (PG)

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