330. Forrest Gump: An American Film Legend

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Forrest Gump is a 1994 film depicting the life of a simple, Alabama-born man who achieves great success in life despite being mentally slow. The lead character is played by the great Tom Hanks, who is involved in many of the most significant moments in American history. The film and character have become iconic figures in American society because of its message that any feat can be accomplished no matter what obstacles are faced.

Gump was born to a single mother in rural Alabama during the 1950s. He is a slow-witted boy who seems unaware of his surroundings, or purpose in life. A school counselor tells his mother Gump's IQ is so low, and would be placed into a special vocational program. His mother convinces the counselor to disregard Gump's low IQ score. Forrest is allowed to attend a regular public school.

Because of his athletic ability, Gump gets a scholarship to play football at the University of Alabama, where he excels at the game. Upon graduation, he is approached by an army recruiter, and joins the military, where again he excels. Gump is awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor for saving the lives of many of his fellow troops during a vicious firefight in the Vietnam War.

After his time in the service, Gump wins an international ping pong competition in China, brings down President Richard Nixon while staying at the infamous, Watergate Hotel, meets three presidents, and goes on several, cross-country runs that gain massive media attention. Throughout his life, Gump maintains solid relationship with his friends from the Army, and dearly loves his only childhood friend and sweetheart, Jenny. Forrest Gump touches the American spirit like no other film ever has.

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