Director: Penny Marshall
In the sophomore directorial effort from comedic actress turned director Penny Marshall, young Joshua Baskin asks an amusement park fortune telling machine to make him “big” only to wake up to find that he has turned into thirty year-old Tom Hanks. Delightful, funny and very real—-Marshall doesn’t shrink away from the horrors a child would face by suddenly turning into an adult and young children may be a bit frightened watching Hanks’s first night alone in a seedy New York City hotel. However, the winning and charismatic charm of Tom Hanks hooks viewers immediately as we root for our hero to succeed and giggle at his adorably innocent courtship of toy company coworker Elizabeth Perkins in a memorable “sleep over” encounter involving a large trampoline and a glow-in-the-dark ring. There are many priceless scenes in the movie, including, of course, the famous FAO Schwartz keyboard dance. The film was such a smash in the 80’s that not only did Hanks receive an Oscar nomination as Best Actor but Marshall’s film became the first in history directed by a woman to gross over one hundred million dollars. It hasn’t lost any of its magic over the years and has inspired many copy-cats, including the charming Jennifer Garner vehicle, 13 Going On 30.