Before watching this movie, all I knew was that Johnny Depp and Leonardo DiCaprio were in this movie together.
What's Eating Gilbert Grape tells the story of the Grape family in a small town world, where
The opening scene features Arnie Grape trapped in his own little world under the shadow of a tree with Gilbert Grape under it. Arnie gets excited when a team of vehicles comes up over the horizon, and Gilbert tries to keep Arnie under control. There is a really close-knit relationship between Arnie and Gilbert, brotherly and almost fatherly. Arnie could be having a good time then crying the next, but Gilbert is under control. This sort of juxtaposition of characters doesn't seem compatible, but they love each other like any set of siblings would.
I guess that divides are a big deal. The divide between the little sister and the brothers. The divide between Food Town and the small shop where Gilbert works. The divide between Gilbert and Ken Carver, played by Kevin Tighe.
The symbols and foreshadowing of certain things doesn't really sit well. There are looming things that happen around Arnie: the hearse the cricket: that mean that death is near, but we just don't know exactly when. I guess this isn't a spoiler since 5 minutes in, Gilbert tells you that sooner or later Arnie will die, but I guess the anticipation of this death is what drives the movie.
Arnie has this routine mindset of getting himself in trouble because of his condition that forces Gilbert into a more fatherly role. Gilbert gets really defensive whenever someone tries to pick on Arnie. The connection between Gilbert and Arnie makes me wonder about how their relationship will change throughout the movie.
After watching the movie, I have to say that this movie surprised me by the turn that it was taking. It's really powerful. Really emotional. Intense. I love this movie. It's great.
Everything from the character development to the symbols really got me in the end. I feel that you have to see the entire movie to feel the sense of closure. There is so many things that hit in the end that truly make this a cinematic masterpiece.
I give this movie a 5/5.