In the second act of The Circle (a film so poorly structured that it feels like it has five acts instead of three), Emma Watson’s painfully earnest protagonist Mae Holland decides to go “transparent” and have her entire life live-streamed around the clock, save for the occasional three-minute bathroom break. Throughout these sequences, CGI text boxes appear on screen to display viewer comments in “real-time,” with half-baked thoughts ranging from “I just ate cheese from last year” to “My girlfriend dumped me.” Those comments, often irrelevant and ineloquent, are the only part of The Circle that feels remotely relevant or clever…or entertaining. The rest, like the titular shape, is hollow.
If you’re looking to cast an actor as a humble, honorable American hero in your movie, Tom Hanks is your man. He’s the kind of good guy the whole family can get behind, and who will make your dad tear up at the movies. And now he’s playing that role again, this time in pilot’s gear.