Those who remind us of our own personal imperfections are intolerable. Friends complement our deficits and help us survive in the world. Forrest Gump uses comedy to portray physical disability, bullying, intellectual disability, incest, sex drugs and rock'n'roll, relationship violence, suicidality, war, loss, financial fairness honesty, self forgiveness redemption, HIV AIDS wrapped in 20th century American history.
1981 life expectancy with AIDS was less than one year. Forrest's best friend Jenny runs away from painful incest toward abusive men and recreational chemicals particularly IVDU intravenous drug use. With maturity Jenny is able to manage her emotional and habitual addictions, bears a child, works and creates a stable life for herself. But her persistent cough makes her realize that she may not survive long, and she must make reparations for harm she has caused through her immaturity and prepare for the raising of her son when she is no longer available to guide and protect him. Jenny's growing herself up journey occurs on the background of the Vietnam War, being adored by the boy next door Forrest Gump, self doubt, aspirations, and finally self forgiveness for being human.
Jenny's work effort at personal change is a dramatized version of the journey all humans face in accepting what is, letting go of judgment of self and others (letting go of other blaming guilting others for the adversities which accompany every life, some which we cause for ourselves), being willing to start again with work, taking responsibility for caring for oneself and for those who depend on us, willingly letting go of resentment for life's vicissitudes, and getting on with the business of problem solving, trying to make things better, and stop noticing where others' flaws reside and start working on herself.
The sequelae of war, mental physical emotional social cultural spiritual financial, are perhaps only highly dramatized everyday challenges all humans face: homesickness, hope for a future, despair from memories of unmet self expectations, being loved, finding God.
Forrest Gump is a 5* exploration of the human condition, wrapped in laughter, in tears with loving appreciation for our human eccentricities and uniqueness.