What's Eating Gilbert Grape One of the things that my Dad and I had most in common was our love for films. Though he was of a generation that gew up on black and white movies and glorious musicals, I often was taken back by those times he would start talking about the most obscure movies of present day and how much he enjoyed them. He and I would sit for long periods of time talking about these special little films he discovered. A month before he died, he told me of this film he saw on cable TV, called What's Eating Gilbert Grape. He was practically beside himself as he was anxiously describing this story of a family who lives in the midwest, has a retarded son, and a Mother who is absolutely huge. The retarded son climbs watertowers, the Mother gets ridiculed, and there's Gilbert....who is imprisoned within this family. The timing of my father telling me about this film couldn't be better. Paramount was releasing the DVD. I immediately went on-line and purchased the title. It has been sitting on my shelf for months. Tonight I decided to finally open it and give it a watch. I apologize that this review comes so late. Normally I don't review Paramount titles any longer. The studio does not give out screeners, and I'd rather devote my review time to those that do. However, after watching this film, I had to share my thoughts with all of you. I feel like punching myself silly for not watching this film sooner. It has only been over 7 years since its release. I can see why this film has become an underground favorite I have heard so much about. Essentially, the story evolves around a man named Gilbert (Johnny Depp) who lives in a small midwestern town where nothing exciting ever happens. Gilbert works hard at the local grocery to help support his family that consists of his two sisters, his obese Mother, and his autistic brother, Arnie, who is brilliantly played by Leonardo DiCaprio. Gilbert's entire existence consists of keeping Arnie out of trouble and jail. The only light in Gilbert's life comes from the new girl in town, Becky (Juliette Lewis), who seems to understand the lives around her more than Gilbert does himself. To say much more would ruin the film itself. Let me just go on to say that this is a remarkable warm and poignant film that moved me emotionally. Paramount has put out a really nice anamorphic transfer. Colors are very warm, picture quality is quite good. Presented in 5.1 Dolby Digital, sound is very strong and clean, but this movie has no need for strong surround effects and the mix doesn't present more than it needs to. If not for my Father sitting me down one day and talking his usual talk about a film he just saw, I would have never discovered What's Eating Gilbert Grape. As the last scene faded and the credits rolled up the screen, I couldn't help but say out loud, "You were right, Dad! This was a great film!" Available Now for well under $20 - Must buy!