Synopsis: Nell is a girl who's been brought up in an isolated world. The only people she knew were her mother and twin sister. They lived together in a cottage in the forest. Nobody has ever met Nell. After her mother's death, she's discovered by the local doctor Jerome. He's fascinated by her, since she speaks a mangled language, developed by her sister and herself growing up, "twin speak" if you will. But Paula, a psychology student, wants her observed in a laboratory. The judge decides they get three months to observe her in the forest, after which he'll decide about Nell's future.
Genre: Drama
Director(s): Michael Apted
Production: Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment
  Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 5 wins & 6 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
112 min

Miz Kelty?

Miz Kelty?

You don't need me, Mr. Baring.

Just wasting my time again

You know where I am.

No square dancing!

Do you reckon he

ought to be in the hospital?

No, ma'am. My advice is

don't go near those places

unless they pay you a heap of money

Your father's eighty-seven years old, Janet.

Just be there for him

Don't worry,

I ain't a-gonna go nowhere

Been looking for you all over, Jerry

- Take care

- See ya

- Thanks for seeing Papa

- Sure

Billy Fisher found her.

He delivers the groceries out there

I guess she's what you'd call a hermit

She talked kinda funny, too.

She kinda like, uh, "Durr yurr mmm..."

Only one side of her face was working

You try talking out

of one side of your face

Oh, so you seen her then?

Just the once.

When I first moved out here

It seemed to me she was doing okay

Oh, sure now, she lived her own life

I didn't know there were

folks living this far out

Well, there aren't.

Just ol' Miz Kelty


It's beautiful

Well, look at that

Just laid herself down...

folded up her arms and died

Don't look like she's been gone long


In this heat, you'd know

if she'd been dead more than a day

Well... anything

I should be concerned about?

Not that I can see

I guess she hasn't been

outside in a long time

Well, that figures. The last time I seen

her in town was more'n a year back

Is this for real?

No electricity, no phone...

no running water

She lived here all alone, huh?

Well, that's what hermits do, lovell

They live alone and they die alone

Peterson to Robbinsville base

Okay-ay-ay, we're outta here!

Let's get back to civilization

Billy Fisher found her when

he delivered the groceries?

Yeah, that's right

I'll catch up with you

Hi there

It's okay, I won't hurt you

- Stay back!

- Well, what the hell is it?

- Stay back!

- What the hell is it, Jerry?

- Put the gun away. Leave her alone

- Don't touch my gun, Jerry

- Come on, let's go. Come on

- What the hell is it?

- Get out. She's scared

- She's scared? Holy sh*t! What...?

Good God Almighty

You ever heard of

anyone else living out here?

No, never

- Are you all right? Did you get hurt?

- Fine. Fine

- Okay

- Jesus

Let's take this one step at a time.

Stay here. I'm gonna go back inside

Jerry, I can't let you go back in there.

We don't even know what that thing is

It's a human being.

And she's frightened

Well, what are you gonna do?

Talk to her. If I can

Please... don't be afraid

The Lord led you here, stranger.

Guard my Nell. Nell

Good child. the Lord care you

Man, did you see this? That crazy old

woman owned half of this damn woods

What kind a deal is this?

The first stranger who finds

her is supposed to look after her?

- Well, that means you, Jer

- Oh, sure. Just what I need

Well, "the Lord led you here".

There you go

You led me here

Well, you want the Lord

to take care of you or not?

The last time I saw the Lord

was in church on my wedding day.

And look how that turned out. Come on

Well, she's definitely over age

So I guess we notify

the Adult Protective Service

She doesn't need a social worker.

She needs a padded call

That is one seriously disturbed lady

Well, I'm afraid that's

gonna be your territory, Jerry


Well, "the Lord led you here, stranger"

It's okay. It's okay. It's all right,

just calm yourself down. It's okay

Calm down, calm down

It's all right calm down.

No! Whackie!

No. Calm down

Come in

Nicole, you want to sing

"Open/Shut" then?

Doctor Olsen?

Could you close the door, please?


They said it was fine to drop by

I'm Jerry Lovell. I've got a family

practice over in Robbinsville


This is my assistant, Diane

So what can I do for you?

Well... I could use some advice

This, uh, this woman speaks

an unknown language?

Her mother was paralysed down one side.

Apparently a series of strokes

It's possible the girl picked up

the speech distortions

Speech distortion's not

an unknown language

I know. It's more than that

Well, I want to see her right away

How about first thing

in the morning? Nine?

Thanks. If you're not too busy

Well, no known living next of kin

Violet Kelty was just about

as lone as a soul can get in this world

- Hmm. Except she wasn't

- Sheriff's Department

Well, now officially that

"creature" does not exist


There, see what you make of that

Right here?


Yeah, hey, Sally, what...

Where is she now?

I'll be right over.

Yeah, thanks, Sally,

I appreciate your trouble

You think that's how

she got pregnant? Rape?

I have to go

- Mary, huh?

- Yeah

My Mary

You'll be all right now, honey.

He's on his way. He's a-coming

Thanks, Sally

It's okay, sweetheart.

It's okay. I'm here now

Why'd you get upset?


Come on... come on.

There you go

Okay, folks, the show's over

- You guys okay?

- Yeah, yeah. We've been here before


You found me


Yeah, I'm always early

Not a bad day

What happened to her?

Nothing and everything

It hits her once in a while

- Is there any obvious cause?

- You want a list? Life's touch

But she's luckier than some.

She's got a good husband there

Ready to head for the woods?

The things people

do to their kids. Jesus

She's not like that

when she's on her own

Strangers scare her

How do you know?

I've been watching her

She's been, uh, completely isolated.

Almost certainly mentally retarded

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William Nicholson

William Benedict Nicholson, OBE, FRSL is a British screenwriter, playwright, and novelist who has been nominated twice for an Oscar. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "Nell" STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 21 Jun 2024. <>.

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