Welcome back, movie lovers!
Last week I reviewed the adored moving Serendipity. Nothing ends a hectic weekend better than a love story. This week, however, we’re getting a little more serious. I felt that last weekend was such an easy week, that this week I needed to find something with depth.
And my searching brought me to the 1997 film Good Will Hunting. I have heard a lot of praise about this movie, so I may say I was pretty surprised when I found it on Netflix. But, I am certainly glad that I did.
The film stars 27-year-old Matt Damon and 25-year-old Ben Affleck. I mean, I didn’t even have to look at what the movie was about to know I would enjoy this movie. Who could resist these two men? What was even more appealing to a Suffolk Univeristy student was like me, was that the film was set and filmed in Boston. So, if you are not a fan people who lack the letter “r” in their alphabet, this movie may not be for you. However, I think this movie is for everyone. Except for the young ones, the movie is rated R and has some intense language. Highly do not recommend it for family movie night, even though there are some great lessons to be learned from it.
Good Will Hunting begins in a mathematics classroom at the prestigious MIT. However, the brainiacs who make up that classroom are not the prime focus. Instead, the movie is showcased around the school’s janitor, Will Hunting (Damon). Hunting’s story is far from perfect. He’s been thrown around from foster home to foster hood, living in the least ideal situations as well. Hunting and Chuckie Sullivan (Affleck) are your typical neighborhood troublemakers. You know, the one’s who are constantly in and out of the police station because they started some fight at the park. But, Hunting actually has a secret gift. He’s a math genius!
While cleaning up the halls of MIT one night, he saw on the chalkboard a nearly impossible math problem that professors presented in order to stump their students. If Will was anything like me, these numbers would have burned his eyes. However, these numbers did nothing but intrigue him and he solved the problem quickly and correctly. All of the MIT professors want to work with Hunting after finding out how swiftly he solved the problem. As part of his probation, he must meet with an MIT professor and meet with a therapist.
After scaring away several therapists, Hunting finally clicks with Sean Maguire, who is played by the absolutely talented and missed Robin Williams. His role surely added to the richness of the film. It was such a blissful moment to see Williams back on the screen. Maguire becomes the only person Hunting is able to open up to, and he soon becomes a mentor figure. The bond that is formed between these two is remarkable, and I wish I could put it into words. But, maybe the fact that I can’t, will make you guys want to watch it even more.
This movie proves to have every aspect of an A+ movie. There is struggle, there is friendship and humor, there is sorrow and victory. And, of course there is love. The love story between Hunting and Skylar (Minnie Driver) isn’t all flowers and chocolate. It is real. They fall for each other, go through their honeymoon phase, and then deal with some major problems. When Skylar pleads for Will to join her on your journey to California, he is extremely hesitant because he is fearful that she will no longer love him one day. But seriously, who could ever stop loving Matt Damon????
We see a highly vulnerable side of Hunting, and it is my favorite part of the whole movie. His insecurities are so genuine and raw that any viewer could relate. Hunting’s major issue is that he is too scared of ever asking for help, or looking as if he needs it. He feels that it would make him less of a person, and does not want anyone’s pity.
Hunting’s intelligence leads to several major job opportunities from the government, specifically from the NSA. $84,000 would sound appealing to anyone, but, Hunting is hesitant because he doesn’t want to live his life as a “lab rat”. This once again shows how realistic of a character Will Hunting is, with such concrete characteristics.
The movie ends with Affleck’s character peeking inside of Hunting’s apartment to see nothing but emptiness. Oh, you totally know that I won’t be telling you what happened to Will. But, I’ll leave you wondering whether or not he took the job with NSA, or if he went to find Skylar, or if he decided to continue working as a construction worker. The ending is always the best part, so you must find out for yourself.
This movie was one of the most influential that I have ever watched. It was so complex and rich in content. Also, the constant shots of Boston certainly made this movie all the much better. Damon did an extraordinary job with his character, as did Williams. You just could not go wrong with such an all-star cast. If you’re looking for a story that truly has meaning and purpose to it, then I recommend Good Will Hunting to you. The last 15 minutes will leave you in tears, at least for me it did. The movie is also jam packed with amazing quotes:
“You’ll have bad times but it’ll wake you up to the good stuff you weren’t paying attention to.”
“People call those imperfections, but no, that’s the good stuff.”
I urge you nothing more than to spend some time to watch this movie, you will not regret it. I couldn’t be more grateful that Netflix offers such an intricate and influential movie. Please take advantage of it! We all need a good movie in our lives, and this could be yours. I hope you guys take away as much as I did from it! Once again, let me know your thoughts! I love hearing from you all.