Cider House Rules

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The movie “The Cider House Rules” is an interesting glimpse into a life that many of us will never be exposed to, life within an orphanage. This film follows the lives of Dr. Larch, a doctor who runs an orphanage, and Homer Wells, a perpetually orphaned boy who Dr. Larch takes under his wing and who assists Dr. Larch in the medical practice of the orphanage. This film delves into several major themes, the biggest of which is question of medical morality regarding abortion. The film takes place in pre-World War II, pre-Roe V Wade America, a time when abortions were still illegal. However, Dr. Larch illegally but safely performs abortions within his orphanage for those who ask. Dr. Larch sees himself as someone who is performing an honorable duty to not only the mothers of unwanted children by preventing them from going to a more careless physician and receiving a potentially fatal abortion, but also to the unwanted children themselves. After years upon years of seeing dozens upon dozens of unwanted children live a life within the orphanage, he thought himself to be performing a noble duty by performing these safe abortions. Homer finds himself conflicted about the morality of abortions, and it seems obvious that his own past influences his stance on abortion. Being an orphaned child himself, he could have easily have been one of the aborted babies and never been given a chance to live the life he has. This leads Homer to refuse to assist in any of the abortions done by Dr. Larch, even though he is proficient enough in Obstetric and Gynecological practice to perform them himself. This moral divide between Dr. Larch and Homer grows large enough that Homer feels the need to leave the orphanage and goes to live on the estate of a couple who had come to the orphanage for an abortion. One of the most significant parts of the film for me was the scene where a young girl is found to be dying for a botched abortion. While Homer is horrified, he is still not convinced of...
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