1) A favorite movie of mine was filmed right here in Beaufort, South Carolina, which is the movie Forrest Gump. This movie follows Forrest over most of his life, from a young boy, through adolescence, adulthood, going to war, falling in love and becoming a Father. Lifespan Development is shown throughout this movie through multiple characters. I enjoy this movie not only because of the local places that can be seen in the film, but also because Forrest is hard not to like. With iconic quotes from the movie and notable ways he keeps on moving. Even with his intellectual disability which could be considered his cognitive development he never lets anything stop him. Forrest started with braces on his legs and literally broke free from them. Even though Forrest’s Father is never seen in the movie, the audience is suggested he is solely raised by his Mother during a critical period of his life. Being fatherless could have shaped the way Forrest changed and grew as a person. Social Development is brought to attention to the audience when Forrest becomes best friends with his fellow soldier, “Bubba.” The two are different race one Caucasian and the other African American, in a time of racial conflict. We are also given a glimpse at different cohorts, the audience is shown the Vietnam war era where Forrest and Bubba are sent off to War, the black panther movement, and are eluded to the AIDS epidemic in the end of the film when Jenny, Gump’s sweetheart, dies. Another comparison to lifespan development is when we see Jenny being abused by her father, running away and then later turning to a life or drugs and violence. Some would say this could be called psychodynamic perspective, where behavior is motivated by past events or childhood. Another great example of this movie would be Lt. Dan, a superior to Forrest during the War. It is described that Lt. Dan suffers from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder due to his injuries. Many parts of this movie can be examples of Lifespan Development.
2) I have a high suspicion that I am not the only one to chose this character, nonetheless, I chose Sheldon Cooper played by Jim Parsons in the sitcom Big Bang Theory. Every character within ever story line in a movie or in a tv series has some version of growth or digression, but with Sheldon Cooper, he displays exponential growth socially. Dr. Cooper begins as intellectual, routine driven with ritualistic quirks and flat affect that accompanies his incapability of empathy. Some have speculated that, although highly functioning, he has attributions of autism but out of respect of his character, this was never disclosed by the showing network or the description of the show given by the directors or producers themselves. After personally binge watching the episodes, it is known that Sheldon was raised in a two parent home. Mom was a devout believer in the christian faith, his father was an alcoholic that died when Sheldon was at the age of 14. Due to Sheldon having a high level of intelligence, he graduated high school at the age of 11 then subsequently started college. Having a mind of an adult and a body still of an adolescent contributed to his past of being bullied and his reliability of “superheroes” as idols to cope with the bullying. It was also discovered that Sheldon witnessed his father having an affair which began his rhythmic knocking on doors and announcing his intended audience at the same time. So before the first episode, of the first season, we already have a rich understanding of where the character has come from cognitively and behaviorally. His routine driven, lack of empathy and flat affect may be due to an outside force from an interruption in his continuous upbringing by introducing discontinuous change by his fathers death. This also was during a sensitive period in his life when I assume him to be pubescent at the age of 14. The traumatic enduring of bullying and witnessing of an affair may have created an emotional response that was later substituted to create his consistent need of ritualistic routines. During season one, one minute change of finding a new roommate started a trickle of events that developed him Sheldon Cooper into someone who gained many friends of different opinions, married, and someone who is able to express his own emotions allowing him to eventually understand others emotions. He ultimately kept his routines and rhythmic quirks, but a new roommate allotted new introduction of outside stimuli that not necessarily allowed him to change as a person but gave him flexibility to adapt to differences. I enjoyed this TV series as not only only for its comical relief but it shows the “human side” of extremely bright individuals. It also shows major growth in the characters, especially Sheldon, and to me solidifies my belief that nurture has a high degree of impact even later in life.