1) The loss of Nellís twin sister had a dramatic effect on her. Nell and May were
raised in a secluded environment with no outside contact. As a result, May and Nell
became very close emotionally and were an integral part in each others lives. When May
died, Nell lost part of her life as well which resulted in vivid memory replay. A good
example of this is when Nell was turning around in circles by herself but, in her mind, she
was turning around in circles with her missing half. At the end of the movie, the evidence
of the importance of May in Nellís life was still evident as Nell played will Jerryís daughter
on the rocks that May and her once played on. The movie did portray what is generally
believed about twins. The loss of one had a dramatic effect on the other. They had their
own twin speech and their own games. At the end of 20 plus years, Nell still felt the loss
of her twin sister.
2) The expert psychologist in the movie believed that Nell was mentally retarded
and had made a small amount of intellectual development as a result of being raised in
seclusion. Fortunately, they were wrong. The speech that Nell gave in the courtroom
proved that she had developed intellectually. While the language that she used was
different, Nell still gave a good list of very abstract ideas that someone who is mentally
retarded could not possibly comprehend. Nell understood why she was different saying
that she was raised in a small world and knew small things unlike the large things found in
the city of Charlotte, N.C. This proved that Nell was very capable of living by herself and
taking care of herself.
3) The experts, in the beginning of the movie, said that Nell was not capable of
making the correct judgments to make in the world by herself. They did not believe that
Nell had the wisdom to make the correct choices in life situations. It seemed evident to
me that Nell already possessed more than enough wisdom to make it on her own. After
all, she basically took care of her crippled mother all by herself.
4) Nell is not mentally retarded. Nell was raised in seclusion with her twin sister
and a crippled mother. The things that Nell learned were obtained socially from a woman
that had loss the use of part of her body. The body language that Nell had learned were
obviously learned from observing her mother. For an outside viewer Nell must have
looked like she was mentally retarded to some degree when, in fact, Nell was simply
portraying the behavior that she learned from her mother. Nell learned almost all of her
actions through observation. A good example of this is Nell acting like a tree blowing in
the wind.
5) In the beginning of the movie I did not think that Nell should be taken out of
her home. Nell was surrounded basically with nothing but her own thoughts for almost
twenty years. Putting her in an environment where thousands of outside things affect her
thoughts would have been overwhelming. Nell was much like a young child in that she
was unaware of what was socially acceptable. In this respect, taking Nell out of her home
would have been extremely dangerous and traumatic as was seen in the bar scene with the
young men. Nell had no idea that nudity was socially unacceptable and made a mistake.
My position on this was never swayed. I believed that Nell needed to find someone that
she trusted and that could teach her about the strange world that she had never been a part
of. This needed to be accomplished in the comfort of a familiar surrounding. So, I agree
100% with the decision to leave Nell in her home in the woods.
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