Only the third movie of Tom Hanks' illustrious career, The Man With One Red Shoe is a hilarious comedy about a case of mistaken identity. With a star-studded cast that includes not only Hanks, but also Dabney Coleman, James Belushi, and Carrie Fisher, The Man With One Red Shoe is a decent slapstick comedy that appears on cable television from time to time. Not exactly the greatest film in history, it is a fun and entertaining movie well worth the time involved.
When top CIA operatives Cooper (Dabney Coleman) and Ross (Charles Durning) fight out a personal turf battle, Ross sends Cooper on a wild goose chase to find a fictional witness who can clear his name of some impending charges. Using planted information from a wire tap, Cooper stakes out the local airport in an effort to find the mysterious man.
Meanwhile, Richard (Tom Hanks) is wearing mismatched shoes (one of them red, thus The Man With One Red Shoe) because his friend Morris (James Belushi) played a practical joke on him. But the joke takes an odd twist when a CIA agent spies Richard's odd shoe pairing and fingers him as the target of their stakeout. In an effort to find out what the man with one red shoe knows, Cooper puts a tail on Richard, sparking a strange sequence of events which leaves the bike-riding violin player questioning his sanity.
But the snafu really turns serious when Cooper assigns top agent Maddy (Lori Singer) to the case. Maddy gets close to Richard (who easily falls in love with her). Cooper thinks he's getting closer to the information he needs when the unthinkable occurs – his top agent falls for Richard.
Tom Hanks plays the lead role to the best of his ability, playing the part of a character type he has totally mastered – the clueless, out-of-the-loop guy. He played similar roles in Big and Forrest Gump, but irrespective of those roles, Hanks is generally outstanding in any role which he's assigned. The Man With One Red Shoe is no exception. Hanks comes across as a genuine and likeable character, totally oblivious to the events which transpire around him.
Based solely on a case of mistaken identity, The Man With One Red Shoe is an interesting concept for a film. Despite stretching the limits of reality, the film nevertheless manages to remains within the boundaries of the sane and normal. The movie isn't over the top or utterly ridiculous like so many comedies of today. Instead, the lead characters remain serious while the circumstances of their situation provide the humor. A light-hearted and fun film, The Man With One Red Shoe earns a higher rating than it otherwise would simply because it provides an early glimpse of Tom Hanks' much-heralded career.
Britt's Rating: 7.9/10