Forrest Gump is a 1994 American epic comedy-drama romance film based on the 1986 novel of the same name by Winston Groom. The film was directed by Robert Zemeckis, starring Tom Hanks, Robin Wright, Gary Sinise and Sally Field. The story depicts several decades in the life of Forrest Gump, a naïve and slow-witted native of Alabama who witnesses, and in some cases influences, some of the defining events of the latter half of the 20th century.
As he waits at a bus stop, Forrest Gump (Tom Hanks) starts recounting his life story to nearby strangers. His story starts with the leg braces he had to wear as a child, which resulted in him being bullied by other children. He lives with his mother (Sally Field), who tells him that "stupid is as stupid does". Forrest teaches one of their guests – a young Elvis Presley – a hip swinging dance. At school, Forrest meets Jenny (Robin Wright), who he immediately falls in love with, and they become best friends. Forrest discovers that he can run very fast which, despite his below average intelligence, earns him a scholarship to the University of Alabama after being spotted by Bear Bryant. While in college, he witnesses George Wallace's Stand in the Schoolhouse Door and is named to the All-American football team, and meets President John F. Kennedy.
After graduating, Forrest enlists in the Army and is sent to Vietnam, where he becomes friends with Benjamin Buford "Bubba" Blue (Mykelti Williamson), and they agree to go into the shrimping business once the war is over. When their platoon is ambushed, Forrest saves many of the men in his unit, including commanding officer Lt. Dan Taylor (Gary Sinise), but Bubba is killed. Forrest himself is injured and awarded the Medal of Honor by President Lyndon B. Johnson. While recovering from his injuries Forrest sees Lt. Dan, who has had both legs amputated and is furious at Forrest for saving him and leaving him a "cripple". In Washington, Forrest gets swept up in an anti-war rally at the National Mall and is reunited with Jenny, who is now part of the hippie counterculture movement. They spend the night walking around the capital, but she leaves with her abusive boyfriend the following day.
Forrest discovers an aptitude for ping pong and begins playing for the U.S. Army team, eventually competing against Chinese teams on a goodwill tour. He goes to the White House again and meets President Richard Nixon who provides him a room at the Watergate hotel, where Forrest inadvertently helps expose the Watergate scandal. For his numerous accomplishments, Forrest is invited onto the Dick Cavett Show, where he meets John Lennon and appears to inspire Lennon's song "Imagine". He again encounters Lt. Dan, now an embittered drunk living on welfare. Dan is scornful of Forrest's plans to enter the shrimping business and mockingly promises to be Forrest's first mate if he ever succeeds.
Using money from a ping-pong endorsement, Forrest buys a shrimping boat, fulfilling his wartime promise to Bubba. Lt. Dan keeps his own promise and joins Forrest as first mate. They initially have little luck, but after Hurricane Carmen destroys every other shrimping boat in the region, the Bubba Gump Shrimp Company becomes a huge success. Having had an epiphany during the hurricane, Lt. Dan finally thanks Forrest for saving his life. Forrest then returns home to care for his ailing mother, who dies soon afterwards. Forrest leaves the company in the hands of Lt. Dan, who invests their wealth in shares from Apple, making them both millionaires.
Jenny returns to visit Forrest and stays with him. Forrest asks her to marry him, but she declines and slips away early one morning. Distraught, Forrest decides to go for a run, which turns into a three year coast to coast marathon. Forrest becomes a celebrity and attracts a band of followers. One day he stops suddenly and returns home. He receives a letter from Jenny asking to meet, which brings him to the bus stop where he began telling his story. Once he and Jenny are reunited, Forrest discovers they have a young son, also named Forrest (Haley Joel Osment). Jenny reveals that she is suffering from an unknown virus. She proposes to him and he accepts. They return to Alabama with Forrest Jr and marry, but Jenny dies soon after. Forrest waits with Forrest Jr for the bus to pick him up for his first day of school. As the bus drives away, Forrest sits on the same tree stump where his mother sat on his first day of school.
Jenny Curran: Can I have a ride?
Pickup-Truck Driver: Where are you going?
Jenny Curran: I don't care.
(Forrest has finished assembling his rifle)
Forrest Gump: DONE, DRILL SERGEANT!
Drill Sergeant: GUUUUUUMP! Why did you put that weapon together so quickly, Gump?
Forrest Gump: (confused) You told me to, Drill Sergeant?
Drill Sergeant: Jesus H. Christ!
(looks at stopwatch)
Drill Sergeant: This is a new company record! If it wouldn't be such a waste of a damn-fine enlisted man I'd recommend you for OCS! You are gonna be a general someday, Gump, now disassemble your weapon and continue!
Lyndon B. Johnson: (Putting medal on Forrest) America owes you a debt of gratitude, son. Now I understand you were wounded. Where were you hit?
Forrest Gump: In the buttocks.
Lyndon B. Johnson: Oh that must be a sight.
(Whispering to Forrest)
Lyndon B. Johnson: I'd like to see that.
(Forrest shows him; Johnson walks away embarrassed)
Lyndon B. Johnson: God damn, son.
|Release Date||23 June 1994|
|US Box Office||$330,000,000|
|Tagline||The story of a lifetime.|
|Genre||Comedy, Drama, Romance, War|
|Filming Locations||Ambassador Hotel - 3400 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, California, USA|
|Sound Mix||DTS, Dolby Digital|
|Color||Black and White, Color|
|Film Class||Period Film, Americana|
|Niche Genre||Comedy Drama|
|Mood||Memory Lane, Triumph of the Spirit|
|Themes||Saintly Fools, Rags To Riches, Mothers and Sons, Unrequited Love|
|Tones||Sentimental, Bittersweet, Heartwarming, Nostalgic, Earnest, Sweeping, Whimsical|