Forrest Gump

From Academic Kids

Template:Infobox Movie Forrest Gump is the lead character of the eponymous 1985 novel by Winston Groom, and of the 1994 Paramount Pictures film based on the novel. The film was a huge commercial success, although Paramount claimed it was a commercial failure, and did not pay Groom his share of the profits. As such, Groom has refused to allow the novel's sequel, Gump and Co., to be filmed, stating that he could not in good conscience sell the rights to film the sequel to a failure. The film garnered a total of 13 Academy Award nominations, of which it won 6, including Best Picture and Best Director. The film differs substantially from the book on which it was based.


The film

The film, which was directed by Robert Zemeckis, tells the story of a simple man's epic journey through life, meeting historical figures and experiencing first-hand historic events largely unaware of their significance, due to his low IQ. In the film, Forrest (played by Tom Hanks) calls the police about the Watergate break-in, invents the smiley face without realizing it, inspires John Lennon to write "Imagine", and makes millions on Apple Computer stock thinking he has invested in a fruit company.

The film was praised by many critics as a modern fable. The film's special effects include blending of Gump with footage of various historical figures, a process sometimes referred to as "gumping."

Plot summary of the movie

Young Forrest Gump was born in fictional Greenbow, Alabama with a crooked spine, forcing to walk with the aid of leg braces from a young age. His odd walk proved paramount to the inception of a young musician Elvis Presley's dance routine. Overcoming his physical handicap, Forrest began to run extensively. This running ability brought him great success with the football team of the University of Alabama (playing for the legendary Paul Bryant). During service with the US Army in the Vietnam War, he helped to carry wounded members of his platoon to safety, earning him the Medal of Honor.

After being discharged from the Army, he returned home and began a shrimp business, drawing on advice given to him by his African American army buddy, Bubba. His former commander, Lieutenant Dan (Gary Sinise), joined him in his business venture, the Bubba Gump Shrimp Corporation, which was named after his fallen comrade. One particular instance that arose during Forrest's shrimping career involved Forrest and Lieutenant Dan taking their boat out during Hurricane Carmen. Returning to port after the hurricane, they found that all other fishing boats in the area had been destroyed by the storm, giving them an instant monopoly in the shrimp market and thus making Forrest a very wealthy man. Forrest imparts a portion of his fortune to the mother of his late friend Bubba, feeling it only just that his friend receive his share of the profits, even if he is not there to enjoy the 'fruits of his labour'. Moreover, he buys, then subsequently tears down, the house where his childhood sweetheart, Jenny (Robin Wright), had been abused by her father.

On completion of Forrest's narration to the various people who wait with him at the bus stop, he discovers from a lady with whom he has been speaking that Jenny's house, his destination since the very beginning of the film, was merely "5 or 6 blocks" down the street. He is reunited with Jenny and, unbeknowst to Forrest initially, his son. Jenny tells Forrest that the boy is named after his father; the child is Forrest's son. However, the moment was bittersweet, as Jenny tells Forrest she is suffering from an unknown virus, the symptoms of which sound indicative of the acquired immune deficiency syndrome AIDS.

Jenny finally died "on a Saturday morning", March 22, 1982, making Forrest the only parent to little Forrest (Haley Joel Osment), a bright child who attends school. Jenny's death causes Forrest to question the nature of life: is it "destiny", or merely events "just floating around accidental-like"? Or perhaps it is a little of both.

Criticism of the film

Though popular among many, Forrest Gump's warm reception was not universal. Particularly outside the United States, the film was viewed as extended and undeserved praise of ignorant navet, a stereotypical trait widely associated with Americans in some quarters.

Others, including Lloyd Kaufman note that Gump's successes result from doing what he is told by others, and never showing any of initiative of his own, in contrast to Jenny's more forthright and independent character who is shown descending into drugs, prostitution and death.

Divergence from the novel

Much of the beginning of the film is the same in the book - albeit Zemeckis's Gump is far more placid and nave than Groom's abrasive, judgmental cynic; the film's quote of "Life is like a box of chocolates" wholly reverses the novel's sentiment of "Being an idiot is no box of chocolates".

In the book, Gump does not marry Jenny. Instead, he has many other adventures (professional ping pong player, wrestler, astronaut, etc).

Later in the book Forrest becomes an astronaut, after which 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.


This is one of the three Tom Hanks movies (along with Saving Private Ryan and Apollo 13) where socks play a role in the plot. During the war, Lieutenant Dan's main advice to Gump is for him to keep his feet clean and dry, and change his socks often. (In Apollo 13, Sinise's character walks the Hanks' crew through a crucial process involving socks, and in Saving Private Ryan, Hanks and his men use socks as containers for improvised explosive devices used to destroy German tanks.)

External link


de:Forrest Gump es:Forrest Gump fr:Forrest Gump it:Forrest Gump ja:フォレスト・ガンプ/一期一会 pl:Forrest Gump sv:Forrest Gump zh:阿甘正传


Academic Kids Menu

  • Art and Cultures
    • Art (
    • Architecture (
    • Cultures (
    • Music (
    • Musical Instruments (
  • Biographies (
  • Clipart (
  • Geography (
    • Countries of the World (
    • Maps (
    • Flags (
    • Continents (
  • History (
    • Ancient Civilizations (
    • Industrial Revolution (
    • Middle Ages (
    • Prehistory (
    • Renaissance (
    • Timelines (
    • United States (
    • Wars (
    • World History (
  • Human Body (
  • Mathematics (
  • Reference (
  • Science (
    • Animals (
    • Aviation (
    • Dinosaurs (
    • Earth (
    • Inventions (
    • Physical Science (
    • Plants (
    • Scientists (
  • Social Studies (
    • Anthropology (
    • Economics (
    • Government (
    • Religion (
    • Holidays (
  • Space and Astronomy
    • Solar System (
    • Planets (
  • Sports (
  • Timelines (
  • Weather (
  • US States (


  • Home Page (
  • Contact Us (

  • Clip Art (
Personal tools