It’s been ten years since this movie was first released, yes 10 years already! The Internet Movie Database has the tag line “A story of how far we must travel to find out where we belong”.
I think this movie dips a white toe into many themes. It’s a film that portrays a style of that is how things were in those days, society perceptions of topics such as abortion, adoption, incest, race. It shows the indestructible resolve, yet vulnerability of young adults. There are the consequences of decisions and actions. The young desire to seek that just beyond the horizon; and there is a sense of how someone can try but not escaped their expected destiny and how they reconcile that.
As for the Cider House rules, six sentences written by those who forget the people they apply to cannot read and when they are red out are not irrelevant.
The movie is touching and light, as ever Michael Caine portrays a well meaning man with his own demons. A back bone of the movie is abortion … a contentious issue as ever. Whether it should happen at all, whether it not being legal results in back street mutilations and loss of life where as a medical practitioner procedure is safer. The perception of adoption, at the beginning the baby Homer is adopted and returned because he made no sound [Caine is the narrator say its because orphaned children learn not to cry as it yields nothing] . Home is adopted again but rescued by Dr Larch [Caine] because he is beaten. It shows how sick children are abandoned and some never leave the orphanage in its remote slightly rundown institutionalist environment.
When Homer leaves for the apple farm, his naivety of life is clear because he knows only the orphanage, its own microcosm community. He falls in love with a friends girl friend, an unknown, unfamiliar, emotion, they begin a blossoming romance but she guilty of cheating behind her Fighter Pilot boyfriend and when he is returned from the war, paralysed, her sense of duty to stand by and care for her man causes her to end her relationship with Homer.
I like watching this movie and find a fresh nuance every time … and who can resist the fresh faced Tobey Maguire.