7.8/10
212,452
359 user 90 critic

What's Eating Gilbert Grape (1993)

PG-13 | | Drama | 4 March 1994 (USA)
Trailer
2:11 | Trailer
A young man in a small Midwestern town struggles to care for his mentally-disabled younger brother and morbidly obese mother while attempting to pursue his own happiness.

Director:

Lasse Hallström

Writers:

Peter Hedges (novel), Peter Hedges (screenplay)
Reviews
Popularity
1,359 ( 354)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 8 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Johnny Depp ... Gilbert Grape
Leonardo DiCaprio ... Arnie Grape
Juliette Lewis ... Becky
Mary Steenburgen ... Betty Carver
Darlene Cates ... Momma
Laura Harrington ... Amy Grape
Mary Kate Schellhardt ... Ellen Grape
Kevin Tighe ... Mr. Carver
John C. Reilly ... Tucker Van Dyke
Crispin Glover ... Bobby McBurney
Penelope Branning Penelope Branning ... Becky's Grandma
Tim Green Tim Green ... Mr. Lamson
Susan Loughran Susan Loughran ... Mrs. Lamson
Robert B. Hedges Robert B. Hedges ... Minister (as Rev. Robert B. Hedges)
Mark Jordan Mark Jordan ... Todd Carver

Johnny Depp Through the Years

Take a look back at Johnny Depp's movie and TV career in photos.

See more Johnny

Edit

Storyline

What's Eating Gibert Grape is a beautifully shot movie of tenderness, caring and self-awareness that is set amongst the fictional working class one street town Endora. Centred around the Grape family Ellen and Amy and their two brothers Arnie and Gilbert, who, along with their morbidly obese widowed mother Bonnie Grape are striving to survive and coexist with the absence of a father figure, low wage work and seventeen-year-old Arnie's severe mental condition. It is in this awkward and extremely one sided affair that the unfortunate Gilbert has to constantly, while working for the town's slowly dying convenience store, take care of his younger brother Arnie. Gilbert's life, his future, is thwarted he knows this, but it is in this guardian angel that his love and bond for Arnie cannot, and will not, be let go. That is until the free spirit of Becky arrives in town, and with her grandmother are stranded for the week while waiting for parts for their vehicle. This realization unties new ... Written by Cinema_Fan

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

An unusual story of life...and love in the heartland. See more »

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for elements of mature subject matter | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Despite the fact that animal protection agents were on-set to monitor the well-being of the grasshopper Arnie decapitates in the letterbox, Leonardo DiCaprio actually ended up killing it, accidentally. See more »

Goofs

When the family go to find Arnie (after Gilbert hit him) they are at Becky's trailer. It is clearly very dark when they set out to find Arnie. In all the shots of Gilbert, the sky is dark, but in the shots of Arnie/Becky the sky is light as though it is dawn. See more »

Quotes

Gilbert: We don't really move. I mean, we'd like to, but... my mom is sort of attached to the house. Attached is, I guess, not the right word. She's pretty much wedged in.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The cast is listed with all capital letters in the ending credits. Leonardo DiCaprio's name is listed in capital letters with smaller font size for character "I" in "Di". See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Simpsons: Mr. Lisa's Opus (2017) See more »

Soundtracks

Waterfalls
Written and Performed by Joseph S. DeBeasi
See more »

User Reviews

 
Knocked me over!
3 December 2005 | by PenwahSee all my reviews

One of the delights of having raised a family and having more time to yourself s that you get to go back and watch all the movies you missed. I am just now getting to explore the actors whose careers have been postponed, in our lives, by Ninja Turtles and Disney. I fell in lust with Johnny Depp in Pirates of the Caribbean and he made me a real fan in Finding Neverland. But in Gilbert Grape, he won my heart completely. This man can act with his eyes. The biggest surprise was Leo DiCaprio as Arnie. Amazing, and he was only 19 when the film was released. He gave an amazing portrayal of a boy who goes in and out of his own world. Juliette Lewis was a quiet storm in this film; she gave Gilbert an anchor of solid acceptance when the pain of his life almost got the best of him.

The casting worked perfectly to create family dynamics that were so very real that they did not even seem brandable as dysfunctional. I appreciated that the mother was never portrayed as less intelligent simply because she was overweight. I loved that the kids did everything they could to protect their mother and their disturbed brother from outside influences and hurt feelings. They stuck together until the end which actually became the beginning. A hopeful and joyous film.


123 of 132 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 359 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

4 March 1994 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

What's Eating Gilbert Grape See more »

Filming Locations:

Georgetown, Texas, USA See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$11,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$74,421, 19 December 1993

Gross USA:

$10,032,765

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$10,032,765
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby | Dolby SR

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

We've Got Your Streaming Picks Covered

Looking for some great streaming picks? Check out some of the IMDb editors' favorites movies and shows to round out your Watchlist.

Visit our What to Watch page



Recently Viewed