"Good Will Hunting" is one of those terrific movies that you could watch over and over, and still enjoy. It is centered in South Boston, and even the Boston accent sounds right. The relationships have real passion. You can see the tight-knit friendships among these four friends, especially Will and Ben. But it also portrays love and opportunities never taken because of self-destructive behavior.
There is nothing about this film to criticize. Ben Affleck and Matt Damon wrote the screenplay and are the main characters. Both grew up in Cambridge (which is near Boston). All the actors were believable including Minnie Driver who plays Damon's girlfriend. This movie has Oscar-winning acting. [See form at right.]
The main character, Will Hunting, is a genius. He has a talent like no other but only wants to work in dead-end jobs and hang around drinking beer with his friends. His friends treat Will as one of the gang. Only his best friend, Ben, knows he is meant to do great things. One night, Will and his friends are in a bar frequented by Harvard students and Will is pursuing a girl. One of the Harvard students is trying to pick up the same girl, and tries to make Will look stupid, which backfires. The two men get into a detailed discussion and eventually Will is the victor and impresses the girl.
Will works as a janitor at MIT. While sweeping the floor, he solves a problem left as a challenge for students to solve. The professor is amazed. He eventually tracks Will down, finding him in court. The professor arranges for him to get out under certain conditions, one of which is that he has to sit with the professor and do math. The other condition is that he seek counseling, where Will meets his match in Sean (played by Robin Williams).
The movie is good because it shows there are no guarantees in life, but you have to follow your heart, even if it's risky. Will finally discovers what gave his life meaning.
This movie shows many kinds of love; love between best friends, the love between a man and a women and the love Will has for Sean. And finally, the love Will discovered he has for himself. It portrays life in South Boston where the only thing that can make people do things is self-motivation.
The writers also did an excellent job providing comedy. It isn't a goofy comedy but it has some terrificly creative lines and some classic instances. You laugh, cry and get really caught up in the characters.
This is definitely a thumbs-up movie. After three attempts to see it, I was afraid I would be disappointed when I finally did. But it is a truly outstanding film with great acting and a great storyline. So, see "Good Will Hunting" today! You won't be disappointed. .
This movie is rated R. All those under 17 must be accompanied by an adult.
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.