Miss Potter

What is it?

This probably is just me, but I have been waiting for Chris Noonan to direct his second movie ever, since being robbed of the best picture Oscar for his first one, Babe the Gallant Pig, the wait ended last December (2007), and I missed it. Miss Potter is now on DVD and it is not a kid’s story. It is, in fact, a period romance based on the life of Beatrix Potter. (Renee Zellweger) She is publishing her first book and falling in love with novice publisher Norman Warne. (Ewan McGregor).

How Was It?

This is a fun, well acted, beautiful, amusing, loving and subtly exciting film. (I don’t know if it was more insulting that Babe didn’t win or that Miss Potter was not even nominated for anything!) This movie is not fast. Where that usually means boring, here it’s graceful and beautiful like a Mozart Ballad. There is some animation used but it never gets out of hand. The ad seems to make it look as if it’s a new Mary Poppins, though I believe all the animation in the film was used in ad. Noonan uses occasional animation to show how Beatrix blurred her emotions and confided in her art.

Slight spoiler –

This is the kind of movie that lets you have fun and then, emotionally, hits you in the back of the head with a shovel. The story is great and the acting complements it. I would put this film alongside “Pride and Prejudice ” and the BBC’s “Shadowlands”.  

Now I cannot wait for Noonan’s third film!

Is it good for kids?

This is not made for kids. Thus it may be a little slow for them. There are also some emotional themes that may be too much for them. There is some caution in this film due more to other films. Beatrix is very respectful to her parents but does challenge them. Of course she is 30 years old. There are a few things where if she was in a rebellious teen movie, would be a problem, but she’s 30.

What about Spiritual Issues?

I don’t know much about the Spiritual life of Beatrix Potter, but not much is said here. At some point there are some lines to indicate that they are, at least, culturally Christian.

(SPOILER)

As the romantic relationship is leading towards marriage, they were still physically appropriate with each other. There is a death and not a lot is said about God.

What about Social Issues?

Similar to the “Rebellious teen” thing, there are themes that seem to be a kin to “liberal environmentalism”, at times. (Spoiler) However, what really happens is she loves land that is planned to be developed. She uses her earnings from her books to buy the land and then hire the farmers who were working it, to continue working it. Capitalism saving the environment! How great!

What is Your Recommendation?

This is well worth your rental fees. Take a night, make some popcorn, and sit on the couch with someone (or a family) you love. The DVD also has some nice special features including a documentary on Beatrix that was made separate from the film. There are a lot of things about her work and life that just don’t apply to the romance. They are all in the Documentary.

Hey, and while we are at it, let’s watch Babe again!

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2 Responses to “Miss Potter”

  1. George C Says:

    Yeah, your probably alone on the Babe thing.

    This film was definitely a good one.

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