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Forrest Gump

Forrest Gump is a 1994 Paramount Pictures film based on the heavily satirical novel of the same name by Winston Groom.

Table of contents
1 The film
2 Divergence
3 External link
4 Credits

The film

The film was directed by Robert Zemeckis and tells the story of a man's epic journey through life, passing historical figures and incidents largely unaware of their significance: in the film, Forrest calls the police about the Watergate break-in, invents the smiley without realizing it, and makes millions on Apple Computer stock thinking he has invested in produce.

The film was a huge commercial success, and was praised by many critics as a modern fable. The film won several Academy Awards, including the Academy Award for Directing and the Academy Award for Best Picture. The film's special effects included the at the time stunning, near-seamless blending of Gump with footage of various historical figures.

Plot summary

Wikipedia contains spoilers

Young Forrest was born with crippled legs and used to walk with the aid of braces, his odd walk being imitated famously by a young guitarist named Elvis Presley. Overcoming this handicap, he got into superb physical shape. His running ability brought him success in football, and he carried his wounded platoon to safety during a battle in Vietnam.

After coming home from the war, he began a shrimp business drawing on advice from his army buddy Bubba. His former commander, Lieutenant Dan, joined him, and they took their boat out during a hurricane. They returned to port to find that all other boats in the area had been destroyed by the storm, leaving them a monopoly in shrimp and making Forrest a wealthy man. He shocked Bubba's mother by giving her what he felt was Bubba's share of the profits; and he also bought and tore down the house where his childhood sweetheart had been abused.

The character Forrest Gump bears striking resemblances to the lead character of a 1985 Telugu movie Swathi Muthyam (literally - Rare pearl).

Criticism of the film

However, the warm reception was not universal. Particularly outside the United States, the film was viewed as extended and underserved praise of ignorant naivete, a character trait widely associated with Americans in some quarters. Some political liberals also criticised the portrayal of Gump's friend Jenny, whose experiments with alternative lifestyles through the upheavals of the 1960s end in self-destruction. In their view, this aspect of the film was an attack on the positive changes that occurred at that time and the alternative of Gump himself as empty nostalgia for a golden age that never really existed.


Much of the beginning of the film is the same in the book, but later in the book Forrest becomes an astronaut and the two stories diverge greatly. For instance, in the novel Gump (after becoming an astronaut) crash-lands on a small jungle island with his crew. Gump himself is as dimwitted in the book but abrasive and judgmental rather than naive and accepting as in the film.

External link