The Cider House Rules

"OK"

The Cider House Rules Review


I went into The Cider House Rules with a blank slate, knowing nothing about the movie at all.

I didn't even know how to pronounce the title. It could've been "The cider house-rules," meaning "This is the cider house, and these are the rules." Or it could've been "The cider house rules!" meaning "That cider house is damn cool!"

Wiser readers have probably already figured out that the former is correct, and while this isn't a movie about a bunch of rules, it comes awfully close. Based on John Irving's novel (he also wrote the script), Cider House has that "adapted from the book" feeling -- like the writer didn't want to edit out any of the chaff because it was all too precious.

Well, Cider House is a sloppy mess because of it. We start with the 1930/1940s childhood of main character Homer (Maguire), his adolescence in a remote Maine orphanage, his apprenticeship to the orphanage's OB/GYN and abortionist Doctor Larch (Caine), his infatuation with a patient who comes in for services (Theron), his decision to become an apple picker, and... okay, are you bored yet?

Try as I might, I can't even make it sound interesting, much less exciting. How this book became a film is beyond me. Obviously searching to recreate the magic of introspective period dramas like The Ice Storm and Dead Poets Society, The Cider House Rules is an exceedingly poor imitation that just doesn't work, mainly because nothing happens in its two-plus hours.

To enjoy the film at all, you'll need to take pleasure in the details. Maguire is typically excellent as the brooding Homer. Caine, doing his first American accent, is surprisingly effective as Homer's counterpoint. The supporting cast is uniformly good, excepting the inexplicably cast musician Erykah Badu. As a character study, Cider House is mild entertainment, but it's not enough to merit recommending the film.

The Cider House Rules , you'll be interested to know, represents a 13 year struggle to make it to the big screen. Oh, how you feel that.

House built on a weak foundation...



The Cider House Rules

Facts and Figures

Run time: 126 mins

In Theaters: Friday 7th January 2000

Budget: $24M

Distributed by: Miramax

Production compaines: Miramax Films, FilmColony

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2.5 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 71%
Fresh: 79 Rotten: 32

IMDB: 7.4 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Producer: Richard N. Gladstein

Starring: as Homer Wells, as Candy Kendall, as Mr. Rose, as Wally Worthington, as Dr. Wilbur Larch, as Nurse Edna, as Nurse Angela, as Rose Rose, as Buster, as Olive Worthington, as Peaches, J.K. Simmons as Ray Kendall, as Fuzzy, as Mary Agnes

Also starring:

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Imperium Movie Review

Imperium Movie Review

First-time filmmaker Daniel Ragussis takes an unusual approach to this thriller. Since it's based on...

The Girl With All the Gifts Movie Review

The Girl With All the Gifts Movie Review

Like a 10-years-later follow-up to 28 Days Later, this small British thriller takes a refreshingly...

The Magnificent Seven Movie Review

The Magnificent Seven Movie Review

Director Antoine Fuqua brings his usual fascination with violence to this remake of the iconic...

Bridget Jones's Baby Movie Review

Bridget Jones's Baby Movie Review

As it's been 12 years since the last Bridget Jones movie, expectations aren't too high...

The Beatles: Eight Days a Week - The Touring Years Movie Review

The Beatles: Eight Days a Week - The Touring Years Movie Review

A-list director Ron Howard worked with the surviving Beatles to assemble this engaging documentary, which...

Blair Witch Movie Review

Blair Witch Movie Review

It's been 17 years since The Blair Witch Project shook up the cinema and created...

Anthropoid Movie Review

Anthropoid Movie Review

Outside the Czech Republic, few people know about Operation Anthropoid, a spy mission in 1943...

Advertisement
Kubo and the Two Strings Movie Review

Kubo and the Two Strings Movie Review

From Laika (The Boxtrolls), this is one of the most beautiful, sophisticated animated films in...

Captain Fantastic Movie Review

Captain Fantastic Movie Review

An offbeat comedy-drama with a timely kick, this charming family road trip takes on some...

Hell or High Water Movie Review

Hell or High Water Movie Review

Sicario screenwriter Taylor Sheridan delivers another fiercely intelligent, engaging story that maintains high suspense while...

The 9th Life of Louis Drax Movie Review

The 9th Life of Louis Drax Movie Review

With heavy overtones of Hitchcockian mystery and intrigue, this stylish thriller is the enjoyably melodramatic...

Kickboxer: Vengeance Movie Review

Kickboxer: Vengeance Movie Review

The 1989 Muay Thai action movie Kickboxer starred a young Jean-Claude Van Damme, who pops...

Julieta Movie Review

Julieta Movie Review

Iconic Spanish filmmaker Pedro Almodovar is back with another powerfully complex female-centred drama, along the...

Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping Movie Review

Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping Movie Review

An astute satire of the pop music business, this raucous mock-documentary is consistently hilarious from...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.