Without a Parent Motive

Cinematic birthing of Cider House Rules delivers the goods

Tobey Maguire in The Cider House Rules.
Stephen Vaughan
Tobey Maguire in The Cider House Rules.

Rich in story, character and design (kudos to cinematographer Oliver Stapleton and production designer David Gropman), The Cider House Rules is obviously a collaborative effort, but above all it is a triumph for director Hallström, who brings the same sense of compassion to the picture that he did to My Life as a Dog. Watching the film is like reading a good book: It's so involving and emotionally satisfying -- even though the feelings it raises are bittersweet at best -- that as soon as you finish the last page, you want to start reading it from the beginning all over again.

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