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Films to See Before You Die: #35 Forrest Gump


Forrest Gump (1994)

Director: Robert Zemeckis

Cast: Tom Hanks, Gary Sinise, Sally Field, Robin Wright, Mykelti Williamson

Synopsis: Forrest Gump (Tom Hanks), a simple man is waiting for a bus when he begins to tell his life story to anyone who is willing to listen. He tells about being a young boy with leg braces to correct his stance, and of how his momma (Sally Field) tried to make sure he never feels different. He even meets a young Elvis and teaches him his famous hip swivel. On his first day of school he meets Jenny (Robin Wright), the object of his affections throughout the story. After Forrest realizes he is a talented runner it opens all kinds of doors for him including a football scholarship. When he is finished college he enlists in the army and during boot camp he meets Bubba (Mykelti Williamson), who he become best friends with and they agree to go into the shrimping business when the war is over. They are eventually shipped to Vietnam where they meet their head in command Lt. Dan (Gary Sinise), who is obsessed with following his ancestors by dying in the line of duty. When their platoon is ambushed it leaves both Forrest and Lt. Dan wounded but Bubba killed. Lt. Dan has lost his legs and is bitter with Forrest for not letting him die in combat. All this time he is sending letters to Jenny weekly. While recovering from his wound Forrest realizes he is very good at ping-pong and he becomes a world champion ping-pong player. When he is discharged from duty Forrest goes to Louisiana to fulfill a promise to Bubba and go into the shrimping business where Lt. Dan joins him. After a few months of not catching anything a tornado wrecks all of the other ships Forrest and Lt. Dan cash in on their good fortune. When he finds out his momma is sick Forrest returns home to take of his momma. After his mom dies Jenny arrives to stay with Forrest and they are happy for a short time before Jenny has to leave again. When Jenny leaves Forrest feels so empty and then decides to run and he runs for years until he just didn’t feel like running anymore. A few years later he receives a letter from Jenny asking him to visit her which leads us back to the bus stop.

Trivia: Tom Hanks signed onto the film after an hour and a half of reading the script but agreed to take the role only on the condition that the film was historically accurate. He initially wanted to ease Forrest’s pronounced Southern accent, but was eventually persuaded by director Robert Zemeckis to portray the heavy accent stressed in the novel and patterned his accent after Michael Conner Humphreys (young Forrest) who actually talked that way.

Why I think you should see this: When I was a kid I was too young to really appreciate how awesome Forrest Gump is but now years later I have come to love the film. Tom Hanks is just incredible as Forrest and Robin Wright is pretty amazing as Jenny. After reading the book it is a little bit disappointing that they left some of his adventures from the novel out but it still makes for a great film. Although Pulp Fiction and Shawshank Redemption were released the same year it doesn’t bother me that Forrest Gump won because it is just so amazing. Check this one out sometime you won’t be disappointed.


About Trevor

Hi my name is Trevor and this is my blog! Films are a passion of mine. I am a total film geek. I own over 700 films and the collection is ever growing. I studied Film Studies and Scriptwriting in College. What I have learned about films is mostly self taught.

10 responses to “Films to See Before You Die: #35 Forrest Gump

  1. My husband and I will stop everything to watch this movie if we catch it on cable. Gary Sinise is amazing in it. I’m a sucker for all the pop culture tie ins. We have matching blog templates, lol.

  2. I remember being frustrated when FG got the AA for Best Picture instead of Shawshank Redemption. I was disappointed because I preferred the latter over the former.

    But when I watched FG again many years later I appreciated it a lot more.

    I still prefer SR but I have a greater respect for FG as I can see and understand its many layers upon subsequent viewings. Kim*

  3. jmro98

    I agree….a must see….and it is one I can watch again and again, good music too….

  4. jazfagan

    Life, my friend is like a box of chocolates, You never know what you’re gonna get…Peace Jaz

  5. “When I was a kid I was too young to really appreciate how awesome Forrest Gump is but now years later I have come to love the film.”
    Same for me. I saw this in theaters actually and I really liked it, but the more serious bits went right over my head. Seeing it again recently was like seeing it for the first time.

  6. THE very first movie I ever bought just for me. *before then I only bought movies for son*

  7. Did you know this particular bit of trivia? While taking a tour in Savannah, the tour guide showed us the place where Forrest sits on his bench. Originally, there was no bench there. The crew decided to film on that spot because they liked that particular square was. The bench was added for filming. And then later removed. There is no bench in that spot now. (:^)

  8. Thanks for stopping by my blog. I love Forest Gump.

  9. Sally Field, who portrayed his mother, was believable in her display of unconditional love. What I loved about this movie is that the underlying theme was: Anything is possible. It’s one of my all time favorites.

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