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Feature
Tom Hardy: A Viewer's Guide
From male model to professional film and television actor

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An actor of astonishing range, just as comfortable inhabiting guttural types like Charles Bronson and Tinker Tailor’s Ricki Tarr as he is playing more manicured gentlemen like Inception’s Eames, Tom Hardy is in demand and on the rise. His latest film, Steven Knight’s motorway-set drama Locke, is a persuasive showcase for his gifts. In it he plays a construction worker faced with a potentially life-changing dilemma. With the world at his feet, the 36 year-old actor seemingly has only the nicer sorts of choices to make these days. We’ve looked back on his ascent to prominence with a swift cruise through the highs and lows of his career to date.

WORDS PHIL DE SEMLYEN
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ESSENTIAL VIEWING: INCEPTION (2010)

Inception

Truly talented actors can do a lot with not too much, and Tom Hardy proves that maxim by all but stealing Christopher Nolan’s sci-fi heist movie from beneath his gilded co-stars. As Eames, he’s the suavely gone-to-seed, old-worldy trickster in Mombasa – A Good Conman In Africa? – who Leonardo DiCaprio's Cobb comes to rely on as a dream impersonator convincing enough to dupe his mark. Hardy describes his character as “an old, Graham Greene-type diplomat” with a “sort of faded, shabby grandeur”, and sure enough, he delivers all those facets in just a handful of scenes. It’s a performance so finely tuned, it had some immediately touting him for 007 duties. With a single line – “Don’t be afraid to dream a little bigger, darling” – he proves himself capable of playing effete and badass at exactly the same time.

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Your Comments

1
Hardy in Bronson took my breath away. An outstanding performance on all levels. Personally, I wasn't a fan of Warrior but his acting was not at fault, I just found the narrative ridiculous. I would definitely recommend Lawless and Stuart: A Life Backwards as well! More

Posted by tbird on Tuesday April 29, 2014, 13:17

2 Lawless
You Missed out Lawless, a great performance in this Australian gangster movie with Guy Pearce , Gary Oldman and Directed by Nick Cave....Awesome Log Off and go watch now ! More

Posted by dovitt on Thursday April 24, 2014, 12:33

3
Agreed - despite being a Sky drama, The Take is essential viewing, mainly due to Hardy's performance. More

Posted by Mr Grizzly on Wednesday April 23, 2014, 15:25

4 He's pretty much fabulous in everything...
To be honest, This Means War is not that bad, it's a little tonally weird but the leads are appealing and the concept was kind of funny. The one to avoid should have been Minotaur, which is just an objectively terrible low-budget movie with everyone stomping about in cavemen boots. Also, seconding the Handsome Bob love from Rocknrolla. Every second with Gerard Butler and Tom Hardy in it is golden. More

Posted by callaghan_h on Tuesday April 22, 2014, 13:58

5 'in demand and on the rise...'
...the DARK KNIGHT rise, that is! More

Posted by putthatcookiedown on Saturday April 19, 2014, 15:28

6
Stuart: A Life Backwards may have just been a TV movie, but features incredible performances from Hardy and Cumberbatch. Well worth a mention. More

Posted by Myles Mac on Friday April 18, 2014, 19:36

7
Handsome Bob in Rockn'Rolla would have made my list as well. He's a great actor. More

Posted by mytvisevil on Friday April 18, 2014, 17:21

8
I think, although only a TV picture, 'The Take' should be in the Essential viewing list as it is a startling performance by Mr Hardy that should rank among his very best. More

Posted by chrisymarsh on Thursday April 17, 2014, 23:42

9
also i thought this means war was quite funny ! More

Posted by Suarez007 on Thursday April 17, 2014, 19:22

10
Have to say I think Bronson is massively overated. Got quite bored early on .... once Bronson has gone mental for the hundreth time its like .....yeah i get the gist .... More

Posted by Suarez007 on Thursday April 17, 2014, 19:20


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