This is a very moving film, superbly acted. There are controversial aspects, for example, the mother's social disapproval of the Forresters, the family nearest the Baxters.
Undoubtedly because of my own experience, the aspect of this film most moving for me was the mother's inability to show affection for her son. Pa says, "Don't be afraid to love the boy, Ma." This theme was lost on my young son; I doubt pre-adolescent people can begin to understand the experiences which have resulted in her seeming harshness to her son.