What's Eating Gilbert Grape

Life is a terrible thing to sleep through.

Romance Drama
118 min     7.7     1993     USA


Gilbert Grape is a small-town young man with a lot of responsibility. Chief among his concerns are his mother, who is so overweight that she can't leave the house, and his mentally impaired younger brother, Arnie, who has a knack for finding trouble. Settled into a job at a grocery store and an ongoing affair with local woman Betty Carver, Gilbert finally has his life shaken up by the free-spirited Becky.


Peter McGinn wrote:
I recently watched this movie again after many years, and was surprised how many details I had forgotten. It features a great ensemble cast who seem to mostly share a screen rapport. Leonardo DiCaprio previews his future star career with a stellar performance as the difficult Arnie. I thought the scene where husband Mr. Carver comes home from work and obsesses over the burnt cookies and the unused swimming pool was silly and a bad fit for the film, especially consider what came after the scene. Meanwhile the two sisters were great characters: they were emotional when the situation called for it, but gave an even and restrained performance. I would have like to have seen more of them.