5.4/10
7,120
35 user 11 critic

Volunteers (1985)

R | | Comedy | 16 August 1985 (USA)
Lawrence is a rich kid with a bad accent and a large debt. After his father refuses to help him out, Lawrence escapes his angry debtors by jumping on a Peace Corp flight to Southeast Asia, ... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(story), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Comedy | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

A man picked randomly out of a crowd is made the target of CIA survelliance and pursuit.

Director: Stan Dragoti
Stars: Tom Hanks, Lori Singer, Dabney Coleman
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

A highly successful advertising executive decides to put his job on hold after getting an update from his father that he and his wife are divorced and decides to extend his break after revealing that his father is a diabetic.

Director: Garry Marshall
Stars: Tom Hanks, Jackie Gleason, Eva Marie Saint
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

When a hypochondriac learns that he is dying, he accepts an offer to throw himself in a volcano at a tropical island, and along the way there, learns to truly live.

Director: John Patrick Shanley
Stars: Tom Hanks, Meg Ryan, Lloyd Bridges
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A soon-to-be-married man's friends throw him the ultimate bachelor party.

Director: Neal Israel
Stars: Tom Hanks, Tawny Kitaen, Adrian Zmed
Dragnet (1987)
Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

The equally-straight-laced and "by the book" nephew of Joe Friday must work with his more laid-back partner to solve a mystery.

Director: Tom Mankiewicz
Stars: Dan Aykroyd, Tom Hanks, Christopher Plummer
Punchline (1988)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Steven Gold is a stand-up comedian who is flat broke and has recently dropped out of medical school. He and several others work regularly at the Gas Station, a New York comedy club. The ... See full summary »

Director: David Seltzer
Stars: Sally Field, Tom Hanks, John Goodman
The Money Pit (1986)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A young couple struggles to repair a hopelessly dilapidated house.

Director: Richard Benjamin
Stars: Tom Hanks, Shelley Long, Alexander Godunov
Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

A Protestant World War II pilot and a Jewish girl fall in love in Jerusalem, even though their diverse backgrounds threaten to pull them apart.

Director: Moshé Mizrahi
Stars: Tom Hanks, Cristina Marsillach, Benedict Taylor
Splash (1984)
Comedy | Fantasy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A young man is reunited with a mermaid who saves him from drowning as a boy and falls in love not knowing who/what she is.

Director: Ron Howard
Stars: Tom Hanks, Daryl Hannah, Eugene Levy
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A detective must adopt the dog of a dead man to help him find the murderer.

Director: Roger Spottiswoode
Stars: Tom Hanks, Mare Winningham, Craig T. Nelson
The 'Burbs (1989)
Comedy | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

An overstressed suburbanite and his fellow neighbors are convinced that the new family on the block are part of a murderous Satanic cult.

Director: Joe Dante
Stars: Tom Hanks, Bruce Dern, Carrie Fisher
Action | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

A fired cop and useless lawyer sign up as security guards and find they've joined a corrupt union.

Director: Mark L. Lester
Stars: John Candy, Meg Ryan, Eugene Levy
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
At Toon
...
Lawrence Bourne Jr.
Ernest Harada ...
Chung Mee
...
Albert Bardenaro
...
Kent Sutcliffe
...
Cicero (as Ji-Tu Cumbaka)
Guillermo Río ...
Sumo Guard (as Guillermo del Rio)
Jacqueline Evans ...
Aunt Eunice
Pamela Gual ...
Tammy the Stewardess
Philip Guilmant ...
Yale President (as Phillip Giulmant)
Chick Hearn ...
Announcer
Edit

Storyline

Lawrence is a rich kid with a bad accent and a large debt. After his father refuses to help him out, Lawrence escapes his angry debtors by jumping on a Peace Corp flight to Southeast Asia, where is assigned to build a bridge for the local villagers with American-As-Apple-Pie WSU Grad Tom Tuttle and the beautiful and down-to earth Beth Wexler. What they don't realize is that the bridge is coveted by the U.S. Army, a local Communist force, and a powerful drug lord. Together with the help of At Toon, the only English speaking native, they must fight off the three opposing forces and find out what is right for the villagers, as well as themselves. Written by Michael Silva <silvamd@cleo.bc.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Tom Hanks and John Candy are building a bridge between two cultures... even if no one wants it. See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

16 August 1985 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Alles hört auf mein Kommando  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$5,184,360 (USA) (18 August 1985)

Gross:

$19,875,740 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

According to an August 18, 1985 article in The New York Times, Nicholas Meyer stated that the Peace Corps director Robert Sargent "Sarge" Shriver, Jr. (a.k.a. Sargent Shriver) said this movie's screenplay was "like spitting on the American flag". The story reported that three changes were requested: "The (Peace Corps) agency asked Mr. Meyer to make three alterations in the script. Change Thailand to Burma, because the Peace Corps never was in Burma. Don't mention the C.I.A. in the same breath with the Peace Corps. And please change the name Peace Corps to something else". None of these were done. When the picture got released, Shriver was no longer the Peace Corps head and the Peace Corps organization endorsed the movie. See more »

Goofs

In the graduation scene, the cable to the loan shark's earphone changes position between shots. See more »

Quotes

Lawrence Bourne III: [throwing cigarettes and gum to the villagers] That's right, Lawrence Bournes III; rich American.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Tom Hanks' character has firstname "Lawrence". Hanks saves the village. As film fades to black for credits, a large group of "volunteers" gather around Hanks. Just as black for start of credits shows, chants of "Lawrence, Lawrence, Lawrence..." are heard. Absolutely a tribute to scene of O'Toole as Lawrence of Arabia marching across traintop to chants of "Lawrence, Lawrence, Lawrence..." See more »

Connections

Referenced in Psychos in Love (1987) See more »

Soundtracks

As Time Goes By
Written by Herman Hupfeld
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Three cheers for Volunteers, a vastly underrated film
18 December 2007 | by (Toledo, Ohio) – See all my reviews

Lawrence Bourne III (Tom Hanks) is a blueblood, snooty Harvard senior. However, he has a taste for women and gambling, racking up an enormous debt to the local mobsters. Lawrence, ever a macho man, decides to go "double or nothing" on a national basketball game that will be played during his graduation ceremony. Lawrence loses and the mob sends the usual henchman for his hide. Appealing to his equally snobby father (George Plimpton) for a loan gets him nowhere. His only recourse is to ask his erstwhile roommate to switch identities with him, with Lawrence hopping a plane to Thailand as part of the Peace Corps and escaping the mob. It works, although Lawrence has to fork over his porsche to seal the deal. Once on the plane, however, Lawrence has second thoughts. Everyone is singing inspirational songs and looking forward to bringing cheer and good works to the Thai people. As he gets off the plane, Lawrence literally goes down on his knees and begs the leader to send him back. But, its no, no, no. However, things look up when a good-looking fellow Corpswoman, Beth (Rita Wilson) is assigned to the same village, along with gung-ho engineer, Tom Tuttle of Tacoma (John Candy). However, Beth won't give him the time of day and Tom is a royal pain. What will become of Lawrence, anyways, whose attitude is "its not that I can't help these people, I don't want to!" But, wait, how about establishing a card game or two, for money, with the locals? Things are looking up! This is a funny, funny film that is a winner every time. Hanks and Candy are very humorous while Plimpton is a scream in a brief role as the can't-be-bothered-with-details father. Wilson is touching as the woman who truly wants to help others and is torn by her attraction to a man who is a dirtbag. Gedde Watanabe is also fun as a native lad and the other Oriental cast members do a great job as well. The setting in Thailand is lovely, naturally, and the recreation of the early sixties in fashion and other properties is quite good. In fact, the opening montage of sixties photos, set to "Blue Moon" is very inspiring. In short, if you are stuck with an evening of drabness, get this film by whatever means necessary. You will issue "three cheers" for a flick that will never fail to provide some genuine laughs and nostalgia.


4 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?