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Gideon Dobbs is young, simple-minded man who checks into a retirement home where he finds the residents have lost their lust for life. Through his innocence he changes their lives and ... See full summary »


Claudia Hoover


Brad Mirman


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Complete credited cast:
Christopher Lambert ... Gideon Oliver Dobbs
Charlton Heston ... Addison Sinclair
Carroll O'Connor ... Leo Barnes
Shirley Jones ... Elly Morton
Mike Connors ... Harland Greer
Barbara Bain ... Sarah
Shelley Winters ... Mrs. Willows
Crystal Bernard ... Jean MacLemore
Christopher McDonald ... Alan Longhurst
Mykelti Williamson ... Coleman Walker
Taylor Nichols ... Dr. Richard Willows
Michael Bowen ... Billy Ray Turner
Harvey Korman ... Jacob Titleman
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Jack Donner ... Mr. Taylor
Scott Dorel ... Butcher


Gideon Dobbs is young, simple-minded man who checks into a retirement home where he finds the residents have lost their lust for life. Through his innocence he changes their lives and teaches them that each day is a precious gift. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The world we create is the world we live in...


Comedy | Drama | Romance


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Release Date:

26 October 1998 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Gideon's Web See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Mrs. Willows: We don't eat meat, because beef is bad for you.
Harland: Yeah, well, if God didn't want us to eat animals, why are they made out of meat?
See more »


References One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975) See more »


Written and Performed by Bill Elliott
Courtesy of Windswept Pacific Entertainment
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User Reviews

A Refreshing Little Film
10 October 1999 | by Ian-104See all my reviews

I just watched this movie on STARZ! a little while ago and, while it isn't a masterpiece, it was pretty refreshing...and it was well-made. It's got a great cast of characters---namely the "golden" actors and actresses that haven't really gotten the respect or screen time they deserve in their later years. Actors and actresses like Shirley Jones, Charlton Heston, Barbara Bain, Harvey Korman, Carroll O'Connor, Mike Connors and Shelley Winters. Plus, it's got a nice little cast of younger actors including Christopher Lambert in the title role, Crystal Bernard, Taylor Nichols and Mykelti Williamson.

The basic premise of the film was a bit shady to me at first. I mean, out of nowhere a young man---who is apparently a little slow in the mind---shows up at a retirement home (he was sent by his "Aunt Edna") and instantly becomes the best friend of everyone, especially Addison (Charlton Heston), who we learn was a professor of philosophy at a university for 22 years. I loved Charlton's role in this movie. It was nice to see him doing something calm and fun for once. Another rather amusing character is Leo, played by Carroll O'Connor, who is constantly cracking jokes and poking fun at all of his "friends." A chef before he was admitted to the home, he always has something to say about the food. This character was very reminiscent of Connor's role as Archie Bunker on "All In The Family" and it's a welcome return in my opinion. Shirley Jones and Shelley Winters were terrific, Shirley as a friendly elderly woman who is loved by Addison, Shelley as the mean old broad who co-operates the Lakeview Retirement Home with her doctor son, Richard, played by Taylor Nichols. Crystal Bernard plays Jean, a sweet nurse who instantly takes a liking to Gideon, who is played by Christopher Lambert. This was a real change of pace for Christopher, who is mainly known for movies like "Highlander" and "Mortal Kombat." I mean, he actually ACTS in this movie. Something I didn't know he could do. After all those nonsense action films, you'd think he'd have forgotten how to act. But, apparently, he's been keeping it tucked away. He is terrific as Gideon. I'm tempted to call it Oscar-caliber work only I know he'll never get nominated because he is Christopher Lambert. Mike Connors is a laugh as a sweet old former boxer who is trying to find a way to stand up for himself. Mykelti Williamson shines as a handy man who makes friends with Gideon and discovers one of his secrets---he can't read. Harvey Korman also brings a nice little touch to the film with his brief appearances where he asks if the phone calls that are received are for him. The final phone call is especially funny. However, my personal favorite was Barbara Bain as Sarah. After all these years, Bain has remained as beautiful as ever and can still act with the best of 'em. She was wonderful to watch onscreen.

Now, I must applaud Claudia Hoover, the director of the film, for her...bravery...in making such a movie. I don't know if this is her first attempt at filmmaking or not but either way it's a fine piece of work. You get a feel for the characters and you feel for the characters. While there were a few botched places here and there in the beginning, it quickly melded together into a delightful, funny, sweet, romantic and tearjerking film that will keep you wondering just what it was about Gideon that made him so special. Definitely check this out.

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