The film chronicles the life of T. S. Garp (Robin Williams), the illegitimate son of his feminist mother, Jenny Fields (Glenn Close, in her feature film debut). Jenny wanted a child but not a husband. A nurse during the closing months of World War II, she encounters a dying ball turret gunner known only as Technical Sergeant Garp who was severely brain damaged in combat. Jenny nurses Garp, observing his infantile state and almost perpetual autonomic sexual arousal. Unconstrained by convention and driven by practicality and her desire for a child, Jenny uses Garp's sexual response to impregnate herself, and names the resultant son after him "T. S." (standing only for "Technical Sergeant"). Jenny raises young Garp alone.
Garp grows up, becoming interested in wrestling and writing fiction, topics his mother has little interest in. However, his writing piques the interest of the daughter of the school's wrestling coach, Helen Holm (Mary Beth Hurt). She is wary of him, however, because Garp is quite promiscuous at school. Jenny also observes Garp's behavior in this regard and is intellectually curious about it, having little more than... Read More