The Rain Man is a story about the relationship between two brothers, one being Autistic.
The story line follows the as they drive across the country and their interaction as the one brother (Charlie) tries to deal with being thrust into a twenty-four hour a day week long journey and his first exposure to someone with Autism, his brother Raymond. Charlie Babbot is a younger guy who is involved in some high-risk exotic car sales when he realizes that he might not be able to make his bank notes on time. Charlie’s father dies and leaves him with a car and some roses, while some unnamed beneficiary receives the remaining three million dollars the estate is worth. Charlie finds out from the bank that the trustee works and mental hospital and group home, he goes to visit and try to work a deal so he can get his half of estate and pay of his bank notes. When he arrives at the home he finds out that he has a brother that he never knew.
Raymond his brother is Autistic and is a Savant, for his ability to memorize and recall all info he has read or heard before and he can count and do math at astonishing rates. Charlie gets a hair brained scheme to kidnap Raymond and demand his share of the three million. So Charlie takes Raymond back to LA with him, on the way from Ohio to LA Charlie somehow changes his attitude towards his brother Raymond and in the end he wants to take care of him. At the end Charlie realizes that he can’t care for Raymond because of his Autism, but he still cares deeply for Raymond and vows to visit often. The DSM-IV states that to be diagnosed with and Autistic disorder a person must have six of twelve listed traits coming from certain groups in the DSM.
Raymond doesn’t respond to social and emotional interaction and he can’t use body language and such to help communicate in social situations. These two things fill the requirement for group one on page 136. Raymond also has an inability to start or hold conversations with meaningful content, he constantly uses repetitive phrases, he has an abnormal intense focus on reading and memorizing facts, an inflexibility to change his daily routine, repetitive body movements and a failure to develop relationships with those around him. The last six behaviors satisfy all of the requirements for the last two groups. The causation given is a birth condition, which is consistent with what the book says. The outcome is that Raymond will live with Autism the rest of his life, this is realistic because there is no cure for Autism and it is a lifelong condition.
I don’t think that any other character could be diagnosable, they seem to be normal. I do believe that at first Charlie’s attitude towards Autism hindered Raymond, but after Charlie began to understand Autism he started trying to help Raymond by caring and trying to make him comfortable and secure. The attitude’s Charlie shows range from anger and frustration at first to compassion and understanding towards the end.
At first he is frustrated because he thinks that Raymond is just stupid and that he doesn’t want to communicate with him. I think Charlie takes this personally, but in the end Charlie realizes that all that really matters is that he cares for Raymond and deep down inside he knows Raymond cares for him. The attitude Charlie shows at first is pretty similar to what most people have when they don’t understand or feel comfortable with something, they make fun of it.
I enjoyed watching the movie from a different prospective, it showed me how cruel people can be in uncomfortable situations, even when they are nice people. It seems to be a fear of the unknown and a lack of knowledge that leads most to a poor attitude on the subject of Autism,Bibliography: