Volunteers (1985) - Rotten Tomatoes

Volunteers (1985)

TOMATOMETER

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AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

Tom Hanks and John Candy were reunited for the first time since Splash in this period comedy about Peace Corps worker during the optimistic period of the Kennedy presidency. Lawrence Bourne III (Tom Hanks) is an upper-class heel who has to flee the country to escape his gambling debts and so sneaks aboard an airplane filled with Peace Corps volunteers en route to Thailand. On the plane he is befriended by well-meaning Peace Corps worker Tom Tuttle (John Candy). Once in Thailand, the workers become involved with building a bridge, and Lawrence becomes involved with the local Communists, an opium lord, and the CIA.

Cast

Tom Hanks
as Lawrence Bourne III
John Candy
as Tom Tuttle from Tacoma
Rita Wilson
as Beth Wexler
Tim Thomerson
as John Reynolds
George Plimpton
as Lawrence Bourne Jr.
Ernest Harada
as Chung Mee
Shakti
as Lucille
Clyde Kusatsu
as Souvanna
Allan Arbus
as Albert Bordonaro
Xander Berkeley
as Kent Sutcliffe
Virginia Kiser
as Evelyn Bourne
Jacqueline Evans
as Aunt Eunice
Phillip Guilmant
as Yale President
Chick Hearn
as Announcer
Lonnie Wun
as Sumo Guard
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Volunteers

Critic Reviews for Volunteers

All Critics (12) | Top Critics (3)

Promising premise and opening shortly descend into unduly protracted tedium.

March 26, 2009 | Full Review…
Variety
Top Critic

A blasé Hanks redeems this string of sexist, racist, comic clichés with winning charm. It's funny.

January 26, 2006 | Full Review…
Time Out
Top Critic

A little melancholy may blend with the laughter ''Volunteers'' draws at the expense of those earnest days when a President was urging people to ask what they could do for their country.

May 21, 2003 | Full Review…
New York Times
Top Critic

Hanks is excellent and has a way with funny lines that marks him as one of the better droll comic actors, if given the right material. Here, writers Ken Levine and David Isaacs have provided the actors with solid jokes.

December 23, 2013 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…
TV Guide

Often funny premise, but comedy cast makes it work.

June 1, 2007 | Rating: 3/5
Video-Reviewmaster.com

...a silly, thoroughly unmemorable comedy...

February 18, 2006 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…
Reel Film Reviews

Audience Reviews for Volunteers

½

A fun movie, pretty well written, with a good cast, and everything else is pretty average for an 80s comedy. I wanted to rate this higher, but there were a bunch of stupid jokes thrown in that I thought the movie could have done without. Otherwise, it's an exciting, fun, charming little comedy. Overall I enjoyed it anyway, even though it's not the best it could be.

Aj V
Aj V

Super Reviewer

½

Not very strong but some scattered laughs and exotic Thailand locations. John Candy lends Tom Hanks a helpful comedy hand once again just like in Splash.

Doctor Strangeblog
Doctor Strangeblog

Super Reviewer

Tom Hanks plays a rich Harvard snob Lawrence Bourne III, a Yalie with an upper-crust accent who joins the Peace Core to escape his gambling debts. Once on the plane, however, he has second thoughts and as soon as he gets off the plane, Lawrence literally goes down on his knees and begs the leader to send him back. But his pleas go in vain. Things begin to look up when an attractive fellow Corps woman, Beth (Rita Wilson) is assigned to the same village, along with an over-zealous but good-hearted engineer, Tom Tuttle from Tacoma, Washington (played by John Candy). However, Beth won't give him the time of day and Tom is a royal pain in the ass nevertheless the trio gets immersed in an elaborate scheme to build a bridge. Hanks and Candy are very humorous while Gedde Watanabe plays a local named Toon, a fast-talking kid who went to an American School in Bangkok who helps Hanks and Candy communicate with his people. Lawrence ends up building the bridge, but then realizes that it was a dreadful mistake, as he comes face to face with brainwashed Communists, deviant drug pushers and John Reynolds, as the crazed CIA operative, who names his Bowie knife "Mike." A piece of trivia for you to digest: It was on this movie set that Tom Hanks won the heart of his second wife Rita Wilson and the duo are still married to date.

Deb S
Deb S

Super Reviewer

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