Emotionally devastating and heart wrenching drama is also very uplifting.
The Pursuit of Happiness is a film that, despite having the word happiness in the title, stirs up an immediate and intense amount of sadness in it's viewer, and, of course, myself included. Will Smith gives a powerful and riveting performance as Chris Gardner, the real life millionaire, who, in 1981, has his life infiltrated by a huge loss of money and income, misfortune and depression. His self-built business of homemade Bone Density Scanners, which he attempts to sell to hospitals, clinics and paying doctors, has run out, and he is no longer making any sort of income from it. And, worse yet, his exasperated girlfriend (Thandie Newton) has decided to finally leave him, and to leave there apartment in Las Angeles to pursue a better job in New York City, but, it is Chris who decides to stay with his young son (Jayden Smith). But, once he loses his apartment, he must find a way to sustain a life for him and his son, even if it means ending up on the street. Now, The Pursuit of Happiness wouldn't be anything if it didn't have it's well-written, smart and original script, and, of course, the absolutely beautiful and first-rate performances from it's main cast, with Will Smith and his young son (who was only 8 years old at the time) Jayden, who manage to bring even the stoniest hearted people into a deep blue mess of sadness and hopelessness, but, when the time comes, the film evokes great happiness, indeed, thus borrowing from the title of the film, and that there is indeed happiness for these two, after all. Now, despite the fact that this movie is Rated PG-13, it is fairly tame: There is mainly just the overall mature subject matter, such as the homelessness and hopelessness of one man and his very young son, which can be hard for most audiences to watch, at certain parts, because of the fact that it is so sad and depressing. And, finally, there is infrequent but strong profanity, including about 2 uses of F--k, but also other uses of sh-t, g-dd-mn, h-ll, a-- and d-mn. So, Pursuit of Happiness is a rightfully applauded and critically well-received film which deserved it's collosal box office success, and I still enjoy watching it all of these 5 and a half years later.
What other families should know
Great role models
Too much swearing
Too much consumerism
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking