Synopsis of film and action
The brightest head at America’s top university is not a student, but someone who mops the floor. Will Hunting is a working class genius who fails to learn the lessons of life. After running afoul of the law too many times, Will’s last chance is to meet a psychology professor who may be the only one who can understand him. Will is finally forced to face his past and discovers that the only one holding him back is himself.
Film Good Hunting Summary
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Good Will Hunting begins in a tiny apartment in South Boston, where 20-year-old Will Hunting is reading a large stack of library books at a rate of one page per second. It seems that it is not scanning, but receiving information. His best friend Chucky pulls up in front of the beat-up limo, and we know it’s the tough kids on the other side of the tracks.
On the campus of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Professor Gerald Lambeau, who won a Fields Medal in the ultra-mathematical disciplines, teaches advanced technological mathematics. He hangs an advanced theorem on the bulletin board and asks his students to solve it before the end of the semester. Later that night we see Will writing on the blackboard and he seems to know what he is writing.
The next day, at the MIT meeting, Lambeau notes that someone solved the theorem overnight, but no one claims credit. Lambeau challenges the class again with a more difficult proposition that teachers have had two years to work on.
That night, Will is working on the painting again when Lambeau sees him and chases him away for vandalism before he realizes that Will has solved an impossible equation. Later that night, Will and his three friends go for a drink at the Harvard Bar, where they are overwhelmed by the students who are there.
Chucky approaches the two Harvard girls and immediately challenges the Harvard bully, who begins to embarrass Chucky with obscure intellectual innuendos before Will intervenes and makes much more impressive innuendos that everyone in the bar continues to listen to.
Then Will challenges the bully to a fight when he retreats. An hour later, one of the girls, Harvard Princess Skylar, comes up to Will and asks him to call her. The next day, Will and his friends get involved in a street fight with some thugs, and Will goes to jail for hitting a cop.
Will goes to court and cites an obscure law, while Lambeau watches from the audience as the unimpressed judge throws Will in jail. In prison, Will talks to Skyler on the phone and humorously asks her if she is foreplay. In Chains, Will is approached by Lambeau to negotiate an early release: 1) to study advanced mathematics with Lambeau at MIT, and 2) to get counseling. Will agrees with the math, but hates the counselors. Lambeau named five different psychiatrists, and Will laughed at them all.
Lambeau then meets his old roommate in South Boston, a psychology professor named Sean. Sean agrees to meet with Will, and during the meeting we discover that Sean is not as exhausted as we thought. Within five minutes, Will insults the memory of Sean’s late wife, and Sean nearly strangles Will in the office. Sean, however, agrees to meet with Will.
Will and Skyler are starting to heat up their relationship and we can tell they have a spark. Despite the great diversity of their wealth and origins, they are the same. In the first session, Sean accused Will of disrespecting his late wife and being an arrogant know-it-all with no experience of life outside Boston – and he’s right. Will is on his guard just long enough to start trusting Sean a little.
Will does Lambeau’s math and almost immediately becomes smarter than the genius teacher, and Lambeau begins interviewing him for jobs against Will’s wishes. Will’s friends find him and Skyler, and they realize that Will is lying to Skyler about his dark past and being an orphan. Will and Sean move on when Lambeau becomes jealous of Will’s apparent disregard for his immense gift.
When Skylar asks Will if he has a photographic memory, Will ignores the question and tells her that he understands things effortlessly. That night, Skylar tells Will that she wants him to go with her to Stanford, where she will study medicine. Will panics at this affection and collapses, ending their relationship and breaking his heart.
The next day Sean and Lambeau meet, and we realize they have some animosity towards their past, and they argue about Will’s future, with Lambeau wanting to be a math star for himself, and Will and Sean just wanting Will to get better. Will is working with Chucky in a brickyard when Chucky tells him that he hopes Will will get out of his hell and have a better life.
When Will tells Chucky that he plans to stay in South Boston for the rest of his friends, Chucky tells him to stop being a coward and use his brain to get a better life. Basically, he’s asking Will to stop being a loser and take responsibility. Chucky tells her about his dream of showing up at Will’s house one day and that Will isn’t there because he finally did something good with his life.
When Skylar leaves for California, Will goes to Sean’s office, where he sees Sean and Lambeau arguing furiously about Will’s future. Will realizes that Sean is backing him up. When Lambeau leaves, Sean and Will talk openly about Will’s childhood, his terrible physical abuse, and realize that Sean had also been terribly abused as a child. Sean finally breaks through Will’s walls and Will bursts into tears, knowing that everything could be okay. Chucky and his buddies gave Will a gift for his 21st birthday. His first car for his first birthday. It’s ugly, but you can tell the guys put everything into making this special gift. Will meets Sean again and tells him that he is taking one of the prestigious jobs that Lambeau has created for him. They’re saying goodbye.
The next morning, Chucky and the boys drive by Will’s house and see that Will is finally free and has his life back together. All the boys are smiling at this revelation. As Will leaves town in his birthday car, he is seen pulling up in front of Sean’s apartment. Sean doesn’t see Will put the note in the mailbox before he leaves. In the note, Will explains that he is going to California to see how Skyler is doing.
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Miramax Films released Good Will Hunting on the 5th. December 1997. Gus Van Sant played the lead role in this film: Robin Williams, Matt Damon and Ben Affleck.
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