1) The loss of Nell’s 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
Nell’s life was still evident as Nell played will Jerry’s 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.