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The Cider House Rules

824 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Honored with two Academy Awards(R) -- Best Supporting Actor, Michael Caine, and Best Adapted Screenplay, John Irving -- THE CIDER HOUSE RULES tells a compelling and heartwarming story about how far a young man must travel to find the place where he truly belongs! Homer Wells (Tobey Macguire -- PLEASANTVILLE, THE ICE STORM, WONDER BOYS) has lived nearly his entire life within the walls of St. Cloud's Orphanage in rural Maine. Though groomed by its proprietor, Dr. Larch (Caine), to be his successor, Homer nonetheless feels the need to strike out on his own and experience the world outside. Then, while working at an apple orchard, Homer falls for the beautiful Candy (Charlize Theron -- REINDEER GAMES, THE DEVIL'S ADVOCATE) and learns some powerfully indelible lessons about life, love, and home! Based on John Irving's best-selling American classic and featuring a sensational all-star cast including Delroy Lindo and newcomer Erykah Badu, this entertaining motion picture earned raves from critics and moviegoers everywhere!

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Tobey Maguire, Charlize Theron, Michael Caine, Delroy Lindo, Paul Rudd
  • Directors: Lasse Hallström
  • Writers: John Irving
  • Producers: Alan C. Blomquist, Bob Weinstein, Bobby Cohen, Harvey Weinstein, Leslie Holleran
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Miramax Lionsgate
  • DVD Release Date: April 26, 2011
  • Run Time: 126 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (824 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B004SIP6C2
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #10,943 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Cider House Rules" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

116 of 133 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 14, 2000
Format: DVD
Just when thoughtful adults despair that Hollywood will never again make movies for them to enjoy, Cider House Rules comes along and gives everybody reason to hope. From its wide, opening shot to its literary ending, this film delivers to its audience an old-fashioned, satisfying, movie-going experience while at the same time focusing on quite a surprising topic: abortion. Framed with Dickensian sympathy for all its characters, Cider House weaves its way in and out of the lives of half a dozen startlingly original people, many of them quite unusual for mainstream cinema. Michael Caine picked up the Oscar (he's a great actor but he's become a kind of beloved pet for middle-aged movie fans) as a drug-addicted humanitarian, yet Delroy Lindo gives the most haunting and complex performance as the black foreman of an apple-picking crew who loves his daughter too much. Tobey Maguire and Charlize Theron make this long film continuously watchable and even warmly sunny despite its repeated turns into dark material, and a gaggle of adorable moppet orphans keep tugging at the heart strings, but not so much you feel abused. A rare modern day classic.
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59 of 69 people found the following review helpful By J. Michael Click on December 3, 2002
Format: DVD
A sensitive and intelligent character-driven film, adapted from John Irving's novel by the author himself, which features truly breathtaking cinematography, a lush musical score, and uniformly excellent performances by a formidable cast which includes Tobey Maguire, Charlize Theron, Delroy Lindo, Paul Rudd, Kathy Baker, Jane Alexander, and supporting Oscar-winner Michael Caine. The main plot line centers around a young man (Maguire), raised in an orphanage headed by a charismatic doctor (Caine), who decides to venture out into the world and learns the hard way that life is not merely black and white, but many subtle variations of gray. While this is hardly a unique theme, the characters in "Cider House Rules" are so exquisitely drawn, and the movie so masterfully produced, that everything which might in lesser hands seem overly familiar appears fresh, new, and distinctive.
The DVD offers a perfect sound and video transfer, and includes a nice selection of "extras", including a documentary on the making of the film, the original Theatrical Trailer, and highlights of the television ad campaign. Overall, the DVD is an exemplary presentation of a bona fide modern classic, and one that's well worth multiple viewings.
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25 of 30 people found the following review helpful By carol irvin TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on December 6, 2002
Format: DVD
Director Lasse Hallström joins his formidable talent with novelist/screenwriter John Irving and the results are so pleasantly literate and dramatically satisfying. I haven't read the novel so I can't compare the two but films vs. their novels' comparisions are almost impossible anyway since each media of expression is so unlike the other. For one, film is a collaborative medium whereas fiction writing is a solitary pursuit. Judged on its own, the film works perfectly. It revolves around a young man, Homer (Tobey Maguire), raised in an orphanage by its doctor (Michael Caine) who loves him like his own son.

Homer eventually needs to go out into the larger world and experience what it has to offer. He has had problems with the doctor's inability to see the black and white of right and wrong. In his exposure to the outside world, by working in a Cider House in Maine, Homer too is forced to confront the gray areas inbetween right and wrong. Delroy Lindo, as the crew boss of the Cider House, does a formidable job playing the pivotal character from whom Homer will learn the inexact rules for living his life. Caine and Irving deservedly won Oscars for their work.

Visit my blog with link given on my profile page here or use this phonetically given URL (livingasseniors dot blogspot dot com). Friday's entry will always be weekend entertainment recs from my 5 star Amazon reviews in film, tv, books and music. These are very heavy on buried treasures and hidden gems. My blogspot is published on Monday, Wednesday & Friday.
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43 of 58 people found the following review helpful By Robert R. Josef on April 19, 2005
Format: DVD
Unlike some of the viewers here, I found the plot, characters and acting were all executed well. I haven't read the book, but it seems that Irving has cut down on the eccentricities that mar his other works (with the small exception of naming a character "Rose Rose"). However, the themes of abortion and incest which run through the film are very harrowing and difficult to watch. I can't believe this didn't get a R rating --this is NOT a movie for young ones.

However, I found the morality of the film problematic. This goes way beyond the issue of abortion, whatever your stance on it. The message of the film seems to be that the ends always justify the means. This is totally epitomised by Michael Caine's Dr. Larch. Whether engaging in illegal abortions, forgery, falsifying records or substance abuse, it seems that this guy thinks that anything is OK as long as he gets the results that he wants. In the end, young Homer does become his successor to this kind of life. This is held up as heroic, somehow, when it is actually tragic.

This aspect of the film is the most problematic for me -- the total lack of a moral and ethical center. For this reason, I'm not sure that I would recommend the film, but it can certainly spark a lot of discussion if viewed with a lot of discernment and if you don't fall for its false heroics.
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