The Movie Joe Versus The Volcano Quickly Reviewed | Uber Articles
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The Movie Joe Versus The Volcano Quickly Reviewed

By Jaime Mccormick

Before he was Forrest Gump, before Saving Private Ryan, Tom Hanks was primarily a comedy star. If you watched Bosom Buddies, you knew that Hanks showed a lot of promise. He may not be considered one of the best actors out there, but he’s always cited as one of the most charming and instantly likable. His early comedies, Turner and Hooch and Big, showcased his talent for making you laugh and his likability, but Joe Vs. The Volcano is one of the all time must movie download.

What makes this one any different? Well to begin with, Big and Turner and Hooch were fun comedies, but Joe Vs. The Volcano is something more. It’s a great comedy, yes, but it’s more than that, even. The movie is sort of a Rocky story. It contains the meaning of life. Hanks begins as an everyman, selling his time for, as he puts it, “Three hundred dollars a week”.

In the first act, Joe is hating his life, hating his job, working at a repugnant factory (designed by Beetlejuice’s Bo Welch, the factory is really a masterpiece of life crushing depression). The factory sits in the middle of a vast muddy expanse of terrain. Joe works under flickering lights which he’s sure are giving him cancer and spends the day wishing he had the nerve to talk to the beautiful woman he sits across from (played by Meg Ryan in one of three roles).

The hypochondriac Joe quits this job when he’s told by a doctor that he has a “Brain Cloud” which will kill him in five or six months. Into Joe’s life comes an industrialist who offers him the opportunity to “Live like a king and die like a man”.

The industrialist uses an island, the Waponi Woo, for mining, and in order to keep the people happy, he must sacrifice someone to their volcano God, lest he get mad and blow the whole island up. The chief of these people would rather someone from his own tribe do the deed, but they all seem a bit too cowardly. Joe is more than happy to give his life and die like a man, since it’s that or waste away on a hospital sickbed.

From here, Joe is given his life back. He quits his job, he does what he wants with his time, he enjoys himself, and for the first time in his life, he appreciates what a gift it is to have been born. This is the core philosophy of the movie and the meaning of life: Enjoy it.

This belief is reflected in the look and feel of the film. It’s not just another comedy, it takes place in a world all its own. As Roger Ebert said of the film: So many films you’ve seen before, but you’ve never seen this movie before.

Spoiler Alert: The original draft of the script for this film had the industrialist and the doctor getting their comeuppance in the finale. Honestly, it’s better that they don’t. While they were scamming Joe, the fact is that they gave him his life back. Whether or not this is with intent, the doctor and the industrialist serve in the story as both the villain, and as Joe’s savior.

Not in your life time or your children’s lifetime. Imdb Movie The string tension held the whole guitar together! Most of the characters are so pathetic, you’ll find yourself laughing at them simply because they exist.

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Article Citation
MLA Style Citation:
Mccormick, Jaime "The Movie Joe Versus The Volcano Quickly Reviewed." The Movie Joe Versus The Volcano Quickly Reviewed. 25 Jul. 2010. 23 Sep 2014 <>.

APA Style Citation:
Mccormick, J (2010, July 25). The Movie Joe Versus The Volcano Quickly Reviewed. Retrieved September 23, 2014, from

Chicago Style Citation:
Mccormick, Jaime "The Movie Joe Versus The Volcano Quickly Reviewed"

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