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Good Will Hunting (1998)

Robin Williams , Matt Damon , Gus Van Sant  |  R |  DVD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (747 customer reviews)

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Good Will Hunting + The Shawshank Redemption (Single-Disc Edition) + Forrest Gump special collector edition
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Product Details

  • Actors: Robin Williams, Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, Stellan Skarsgård, Minnie Driver
  • Directors: Gus Van Sant
  • Writers: Matt Damon, Ben Affleck
  • Producers: Bob Weinstein, Chris Moore, Harvey Weinstein, Jonathan Gordon, Kevin Smith
  • Format: Closed-captioned, Color, Letterboxed, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Walt Disney Video
  • DVD Release Date: January 5, 1999
  • Run Time: 126 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (747 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 0788814664
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #159,404 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Good Will Hunting" on IMDb

Special Features

  • "Miss Misery" music video

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

Robin Williams won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor, and actors Matt Damon and Ben Affleck nabbed one for Best Original Screenplay, but the feel-good hit Good Will Hunting triumphs because of its gifted director, Gus Van Sant. The unconventional director (My Own Private Idaho, Drugstore Cowboy) saves a script marred by vanity and clunky character development by yanking soulful, touching performances out of his entire cast (amazingly, even one by Williams that's relatively schtick-free). Van Sant pulls off the equivalent of what George Cukor accomplished for women's melodrama in the '30s and '40s: He's crafted an intelligent, unabashedly emotional male weepie about men trying to find inner-wisdom.

Matt Damon stars as Will Hunting, a closet math genius who ignores his gift in favor of nightly boozing and fighting with South Boston buddies (co-writer Ben Affleck among them). While working as a university janitor, he solves an impossible calculus problem scribbled on a hallway blackboard and reluctantly becomes the prodigy of an arrogant MIT professor (Stellan Skarsgård). Damon only avoids prison by agreeing to see psychiatrists, all of whom he mocks or psychologically destroys until he meets his match in the professor's former childhood friend, played by Williams. Both doctor and patient are haunted by the past, and as mutual respect develops, the healing process begins. The film's beauty lies not with grand climaxes, but with small, quiet moments. Scenes such as Affleck's clumsy pep talk to Damon while they drink beer after work, or any number of therapy session between Williams and Damon offer poignant looks at the awkward ways men show affection and feeling for one another. --Dave McCoy

Product Description

Good Will Hunting

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
141 of 152 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good film crafting May 7, 2000
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
There were few films in 1997 that enjoyed more publicity than Good Will Hunting. Most of the hype centered on the two tyro actors who penned the screenplay. It seems that they had been friends for years and in between college obligations, drinking and socialising, they had been toying with a script on the side. What started out as a rather average comedy, soon evolved into a sophisticated drama. In fact, it could hardly avoid getting better as Matt Damon and Ben Affleck must have received a ton of brutal criticism from every Hollywood executive that they approached.

The true miracle is not that two actors, unknown for writing, could get a script accepted in Hollywood but that the script was so good that it put every other effort for the year in the shade. In my opinion, the motion picture academy was correct in awarding the Oscar for best screenplay to Good Will Hunting. Everything about the script suggested writers with a profound understanding of the human condition; even now I half suspect there was an element of that old saying about an infinite number of monkeys on typewriters.

For those interested in this Cinderella story within a movie, you should listen to the director's track on the DVD. It offers a unique insight into the background of the writing and filming of Good Will Hunting. It becomes clear from Ben and Matt's reminiscences that they had a ball during every part of the process. Not only that, they took advantage of their opportunity, to offer support roles to friends and family; a situation that rarely occurs outside of independent film. Surprisingly, one of the best support performances was produced by Casey Affleck, who is Ben's cousin, (I think).

The script took a bit of a risk by making the main character a super-genius.
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27 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A film that rooted itself in my soul and has never left February 9, 2011
Format:DVD
Every now and then, a movie comes along that absolutely blows your world apart. It gives you a perspective on life that you never had before. It weasels its way into your psyche, unbeknownst to you, and takes root...becoming a major part of your inner workings. It's like Inception! When I first saw Good Will Hunting (1997) in 1998 when it came out, I had no idea that 13 years later this little indie film written by two wet-behind-the-ear kids from "Bahh-ston" would be one of my favorite films of all time. I mean...these two guys, Matt Damon and Ben Affleck, are my contemporaries and I was 24 when this movie touched my heart and soul. That's pretty incredible writing from two young guys in their 20s, which won them both Oscars for Best Original Screenplay. Good Will Hunting is firmly planted in my Top 25 films of all time. And I doubt it will ever leave. Especially because the film is as fresh and critical today as it ever was. Repeatedly, over and over, this movie gets to me like so few do.

It's a perfect film (5 out of 5 stars) about the inherent flaws and failures that go hand-in-hand with life's greatest successes and achievements. The human condition, especially the condition of being a man, is flopped onto the operating table in Good Will Hunting and surgically dissected into all the psychological bits and quirks that somehow magically come together to create each of our lives. The emotional and intellectual depth present in the script, the acting, the dialogue, and all the details of this film, belies its book cover. If by some odd chance you haven't yet gone on this journey with Will Hunting, then by all means, get into this film now and for many years to come.
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28 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Four for the movie, Five for the DVD March 30, 2000
Format:DVD
The angry one star reviews for Good Will Hunting demean the legitimacy of the angry one star reviews for films such as Titanic, which are truly terrible. Good Will Hunting is not a lavish hollywood blockbuster that cost 70 million to make and trippled that at the box office. It did well and garnered critical praise but it's still a (relatively) art house film handled well by Van Sant who has constructed good, small, location and lifestyle specific American movies.
This movie is the same. I actually agree with some of the legitimate criticism that this movie is predictable and over wound up at the end. The other criticism about how Will shouldn't be a genius and that the film is generally "trite" seems like silly prejudice.
Take my perspective... I'm a young writer of screenplays and saw the silly looking trailers for this movie written by two young guys. I was sort of furious on the inside that these two were being lauded as great and I've never seen a Robin Williams movie that wasn't over sentimental trash. Then I go to the Angelica in New York, fuming and ready to hate this movie. But I couldn't... it was too well done, well acted by all three of my nemesis and genuinely funny and emotional. Those below who say that Matt Damon's performance is bad are one of two things - without any clue about acting or jealous (and stupid because honestly I'm jealous yet I think he was great).
In addition, the features here are definately good for a couple of days watching and paint a vivid picture of how this film came to be.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars It's all about the writing
Got it for my teenage boys to watch. Writing is superb, acting very good. Lots of cussing but like my kids say, nothing they haven't heard at school. Read more
Published 4 days ago by Kevin Nguyen
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Will Hunting
The most amazing part for me was that the script was produced by two people who were at the time rank amateurs - and they starred in the movie - in a good way I mught add.
Published 7 days ago by Marcel Langerman
5.0 out of 5 stars Had to add my my collection
If you have seen the Movie, you know you will want a copy so you can watch it anytime you want to ... "I had to go see about a girl...."
Published 11 days ago by David Sowders
5.0 out of 5 stars Robin Williams in a serious role?!
A story about a young man who is a mathematical prodigy and his therapist/ mentor (Robin Williams). One of my favorite movies -- a story about what it means to have a mentor -- and... Read more
Published 13 days ago by John T. Way
5.0 out of 5 stars One of my favorite movies ever...
I'm still amazed that these two guys, relatively young, wrote such an excellent, mature, funny and touching movie script. Well acted, great story, and Robin Williams is a treat.
Published 18 days ago by Andrew Thomas
5.0 out of 5 stars Very pleased
I had never seen this movie, and a friend told me I should watch it. I saw that it was for sale on here and asked if it was good enough to buy. Read more
Published 19 days ago by Bill Sheridan
5.0 out of 5 stars GREAT film depicting true empathy between men
This film depicts empathy between men in a way where the men involved both grow in their lives as a result of what they experienced through the bond of empathy. Read more
Published 29 days ago by J. Seed
5.0 out of 5 stars Great performance
One of Matt Damon's better performances, and a movie I think everyone should watch at least once in their lives.
Published 1 month ago by Leslie Kromphardt
5.0 out of 5 stars AWESOME!!
One of the best movies of our day. Classic actors and scenes that will make owning this a common pick of movie night with the fam. LOVE IT!
Published 1 month ago by Pigs
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful film, Ben
Afflec not one of my favs. But williams as a straight actor is eccelent. I like better in straight roles than his comedy, He's play in that role! Read more
Published 1 month ago by paul k powell
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