After losing her self-indulging parents in an earthquake, a bitter young girl named Mary Lennox is sent to live in England with her reclusive Uncle. Eventually she discovers her bedridden cousin and a ‘secret garden’ that once belonged to her deceased aunt.
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A very serviceable rendering of Hodgson-Burnett told with commendable briskness and concision. Like all good works for children it has a firm morality and doesn’t shy away from the novel’s sharper edges, offsetting these with the burnished photography. Charm is sometimes hard to capture on film, but Holland succeeds with measured aplomb.
Agnieska Holland (dir), Zbigniew Preisner (ost), Roger Deakins (dop), and Francis Ford Coppola (prod): all stars moviemaking.
The Secret Garden conveys the joyous birth of new life, rejuvenation, acceptance, freedom and intrinsic beauty. A heartfelt and moving experience with a magical sensibility that will not be lost upon subsequent viewings or remembrances.
86/100 - Excellent.
An international production with Francis Coppolas Zoetrope Pictures producing, Polish Agnieszka Holland directing with british Roger Deakins lighting this garden where family secrets are buried. Despite the beautiful flowers and trees its easy to get of trail and hard to get back on.
" The spell was broken. My uncle learned to laugh, and I learned to cry. The secret garden is always open now. Open, and awake, and alive. If you look the right way, you can see that the whole world is a garden. "