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Movie Review

It's every parent's worst nightmare. Beth Cappadora loses her young son Ben in a bustling hotel lobby. Emotion intensifies with very hour that passes without his return. Hours turn into days. Days into weeks. Weeks into months. And months into years—nine to be exact. Then one day, Beth goes to the door of her new home in Chicago and is met by a sweet neighbor boy who offers his lawn-mowing services. Despite the elapsed time, Beth is sure the boy is her long-lost son.

Positive Elements: The film paints a realistic picture of the strains that a crisis, such as losing a son, can place on a marriage relationship. It also carries these difficulties out to sound and profitable conclusions—forgiveness and resolution. The sibling relationship between Vincent and Ben is also very realistic. It too seeks resolution through forgiveness and openness towards one another. Vincent turns to alcohol to ease his pain in several situations, but alcohol is never glorified. Instead, the ill effects and negative consequences surface, leaving no question as to whether or not alcohol will solve a person's problems.

Sexual Content: At one point, Pat suggests that he and Beth make love. Because of her delicate emotional condition at the time, she erupts into anger. Their fight contains dialogue about the use of a diaphragm and birth control in general. Also, in one short scene, the lead investigator in the case, Candy, reveals her homosexuality. This random subplot never develops further, leaving viewers scratching their heads wondering why it was ever mentioned in the first place. At a class reunion, one woman makes the comment, "Remember when she first got laid?"

Violent Content: Vincent and Ben get into a quick brotherly scuffle.

Crude or Profane Language: Here stands this picture's greatest flaw. Profanity pollutes the dialogue throughout. Two f-words. Well over two dozen uses of s---, b--ch and a--. God and Jesus' name are used inappropriately several times.

Summary: The Deep End of the Ocean is sure to touch the hearts of every parent who sees it. The film wrestles with some very real issues within marriage, sibling relationships and unanswerable crises. It teaches powerful lessons about life, love and loss. It's a shame that script-writers felt the need to inject salty language into this otherwise freshwater Ocean.

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Michelle Pfeiffer as Beth Cappadora; Treat Williams as Pat Cappadora; Michael McElroy as Ben Cappadora; Jonathan Jackson as Vincent Cappadora; Whoopi Goldberg as Candy Bliss


Ulu Grosbard ( )


Columbia Pictures



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Cari Stone

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