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Rain Man Essay

1625 words - 7 pages

Released in 1988, writers Ronald Bass and Barry Morrow created a compelling story by introducing many to the world of autism. These two writers brilliantly plotted the dramatic story of a brother's greed developing into love in the 1988 Oscar winning movie Rain Man. Charlie Babbitt, the first main character played by Tom Cruise, is an arrogant, selfish businessman, striving to be wealthy, but his business is failing. The second main character in the film is Raymond Babbitt, played by Dustin Hoffman, who is an autistic savant who lives and is cared for at a mental institution. Charlie receives word that his father, whom he hasn't had contact with in years, has deceased. His father left an inheritance to Charlie and his unknown (or forgotten) brother Raymond. Charlie inherited an antique 1949 Buick Roadmaster while three million dollars went into a trust fund designated to an unknown beneficiary. Charlie, who is furious, investigates this beneficiary and finds him to be Raymond. He also discovers that Raymond is his older brother, and the "rain man" he vaguely recalls from his childhood. Raymond was sent to the institution at age eighteen when Charlie was just two. Now Charlie's number one priority is to kidnap Raymond and to get part of the three million dollars that he thought was rightfully his. Charlie takes Raymond across country on a journey that would change his life forever. Throughout the adventure Raymond's unique abilities are beneficial to Charlie, but at the same time his limitations and rituals are most of the time more than Charlie has the patience for. Charlie, who didn't care for Raymond in the beginning, learns to love and develop a relationship with him. Charlie teaches and exposes Raymond to many new things he hasn't seen, but in all actuality it is Raymond who teaches Charlie the most important values and that some things are worth more than money. In the end Charlie did receive part of the trust money, but he no longer was concerned with the money as much as he was concerned with his "rain man." I thoroughly enjoyed this film and only hated it when it had to end. 1) The change of setting allows the viewers to see and understand the autistic behaviors of Raymond. 2) The character, Raymond, is realistic because the portrayal of autism was thoroughly researched by Hoffman studying autism and shadowing several autistics prior to making the film.

The change of setting allows the viewers to see and understand the autistic behaviors of Raymond. One of the first scenes showing Raymond's autistic behaviors is when they stopped at a diner for lunch. The night before, Raymond was given a phone book to read at the hotel to pass some time. The next day at the diner, Raymond notices the waitress' name on her nametag and recites her phone number. By this, the viewer can see that Raymond has an incredible memory. During this scene, Charlie roughly squeezes the back of Raymond's neck. Raymond then pulls out his injury...

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