on 4 November 2007
If one watches a film and thoroughly enjoys it and then within days watches it again and enjoys it even more, then that must be proof positive of something. To read carping, niggling reviews about a film which is as good as this one, is at first, annoying. How can these negative views be possible? But then one comes back down to earth and remembers that all folk are different. We all see things in different ways. So I will just state my own reaction to this WONDERFUL film. I rate it more than worthy of five stars. I would like to go further and state that I regard it as one of the best films of recent years in every way. I believe all the performances are excellent but especially Renee and Ewen. The depth of emotion portrayed was extremely moving and to use an old expression- heart warming. Technically also, the film is very good. The music, the editing, and the photography, are all excellent.And as a friend said to me before I had any knowledge of the film "You must see this lovely film, It is delightful" and that says it all....
on 8 November 2009
Unmarried thirty-something Beatrix Potter(Renee Zellweger),a talented illustrator and budding author of childrens books finds a publisher in Norman Warne(Ewan Mcgregor)who is enchanted by her work and the rest as they say is history.
Beautifully realised by Chris Noonan(what has he been doing for the ten years since Babe?)Miss Potter is one of the loveliest films in years.Wonderfully uncondescending script by Richard Maltby and delightfully cast with Zellweger acquitting herself quite well and Ewan McGregor is absolutely first rate as her publisher and erstwhile suitor.
Loses a little in the final act but Andrew Dunn's cinematography is a handsome compensation.Beatrix Potter lovers everywhere must be delighted with this warm and intelligent tribute to a much loved author.
on 16 April 2007
When my girlfriend said lets go the cinema, I thought great time to catch Casino Royal or Rocky Balboa, but no she had Miss Potter in mind, to say I wasn't impressed with this idea would be a understatement, but as I sat there with my popcorn and large coke ready for a kip I was very very surprised with what I saw. A brilliant film from start to finish, definitely a chick flick but never the less I found myself enjoying this film and would have happily watched it again (had my popcorn been refreshed)!
Renee Zellweger is unrecognisable as an American as she makes this film quintessentially English. The scenery is fantastic and there is a certain magic about this film that you just can't help feeling. I highly recommend this to anyone!!!!!
on 7 April 2015
When I was boy I would draw characters from Peanuts in my notebook: Snoopy, Linus, Charlie Brown, Lucy, Schroeder and others. At first I copied them from the Sunday funnies page, but as my expertise grew their forms became mine. The copying was finished and they entered my own imagination, free from their original source.
I thought about this while watching Peter Rabbit, Jeremy Fisher and Jemima Puddle-Duck dance on the notebook pages of Beatrix Potter. How colourful and delightful they look. How sweet their forms are. And how wide-eyed and happy Beatrix seems. She talks to them tenderly and we see how dearly she loves them. All of us who were children remember this feeling. The world of the imagination was our domain. In it we were free and made the world as beautiful as we wanted it to be. It became our refuge and secret world. Which is why we rarely left it. The adults could have their world. We had ours.
The magic in all this remains with some. It remained with Beatrix Potter throughout her life. She became a woman but did not lose her girlhood. Her books were a memory of what she felt as a child, and as an adult she went back, time and again, to that emotional and imaginative world she once inhabited. Which is why the books are so fresh and timeless, as magic never ends unless one gives up on it.
Her parents worried for her. She spent too much time alone in her room or in the garden. It wasn't normal for a child, a teenager, a young woman to be so solitary. She needed to mix more, meet others, develop a social life. Otherwise what would she become if not a lonely old maid? Her parents loved her but didn't understand her. They judged her by their standards, the social standards of their day, not by her needs as a person. They didn't know she was extraordinary. They saw childish drawings on the page, not the mind of an artist who combined both beauty and ecology to transform the world into a garden.
We know how important that garden is nowadays. We feel what happens when the chain saws and bulldozers remove it from our lives and consciousness. Beatrix always knew its importance and celebrated it through the adventures and escapades of her delightful characters.
When she reached the age of 20 her parents pressured her to find a marriage partner. A clutch of potential suitors paraded past her for inspection and consideration. None would do. None were suitable. None could understand and love her. She told her parents this and they became exasperated. They didn't know what to do with her.
No matter. She had other things to think about. Her characters had lingered in her private world too long. Now she wanted to share them with others if she could. She was shy and timid about the thought of publishing but she built up her courage, wrote letters, met publishers. Most were amused by her, by the thought that a young woman could still live and think like a little girl. But she was undaunted. She knew her worth and that of her characters. She knew they had fabulous stories to tell about their lives.
She was right and finally one publisher agreed with this assessment. He recognized the potential in her art. He saw the bigger picture.
She fell in love with the man who saw her worth, who loved her for who she was. He was the brother of her publisher. Her characters delighted him, and so did she. He proposed to her and she accepted. She astonished and delighted her parents with this news. So their child was normal after all. She could love a man and accept him as her husband. What a load this was off her mother's mind.
But he died. That's how incredibly cruel life can seem. The one man who loved her and whom she loved perished. He died of leukemia before they could marry.
Beatrix took refuge thereafter in her art, characters and books. She also found peace in nature, particularly in the Lake District, that wondrous part of England she loved so well. Her family had been visiting it for years on holiday from their home in London. Now she made a momentous decision: she would quit London and move to the Lakes. No, her parents said. Yes, Beatrix said. She was a child no more. She had her own income and independence. She even had fame, as her books had given her this. She would use this, this fame and influence, to help preserve the beauty of the Lake District. From Hill Top Farm, the sheep farm she bought near Windermere, she became a conservationist. She also married a local farmer.
If her parents never quite fully understood her, upright Victorians as they were, the world did. She has never stopped being loved as the person who gave the world Peter Rabbit, Miss Moppet and Tom Kitten, and when you watch this marvelous film you appreciate her and what she stood for. The world needs more heart of the sort Beatrix Potter had. She is a treasure to all who love children, art, beauty and nature.
on 28 May 2014
This is a pretty film and very well made. The cast is good and overall the film in entertaining in its oh so soppy way. However thats all it is - a sweet film. IT IS NOT THE STORY OF BEATRIX POTTER.
It certainly does not tell the tale of Potters life and the story is overly sentimental and does not do justice at all to the real Potter. I think at the start of the film it should say that it is mainly fiction - its a shame to give viewers the impression that they know something of her life by the end of the movie - because they know very little.
Potter indeed wrote childrens books - but she was so much more than that. She was a down to earth woman - she certainly did not carry on talking to her drawings as shown in the film, she did adore real animals however and often had a rabbit/hedgehog - goodness knows what with her in a carrying basket.
She did get secretly engaged to the younger Warne brother and he did die - but her relationship with him was mainly via mail. She did marry William Heelis but she did not know him as a child and in fact he was quite a bit younger than her her parents took a long time to accept him too.
To miss out her amazing scientific studies in this film is a crime - a disgrace infact. Her ill health is overlooked too.
And to miss out most of her involvment with the Lake district/ the founders of the National Trust/the artists she knew via her father is to create a very light frothy story that i'm sure she would have hated.
She was an amazing woman and the film needs to be taken with a very large pinch of salt. If you want to know about Potters life read '' Beatrix Potter: The extraordinary life of a Victorian genius '' by Linda Lear - a suberb book - and by the end of the book you'll understand why she is refered to as a genius - not a frothy, bubbly, emotional childrens book writer as potrayed in this film.
on 9 October 2015
This is a sweet and rather precious film, which I find delightful. I do love happy endings, so I was initially disappointed that her fiance died. However, for those who persist with the credits at the end, we discover a subsequent very happy ending! From that same source, we also find that Miss Potter acquired more and more land so it could not be developed, but remain in its beauty in the Lake District. What a wonderful woman, and what a wonderful film.
on 11 May 2013
This is a fantastic film. I have to admit that I bought it with some trepidation when I realised that Renee Zellweger was in it as I have only seen her in Bridget Jones. Finding her so convincing as the chain-smoking, always-drinking and perpetually single Miss Jones, I find it difficult imagining her as a children's author writing Peter Rabbit, but I was pleasantly surprised. She is fantastic. The film is basically about Beatrix Potter's life. While I cannot vouch for its historical accuracy it is nonetheless a moving film and it was interesting seeing the difficulties Beatrix had to overcome.
on 5 October 2009
This highly under rated film will bring great joy and tears to anyone with a heart. Thoroughly enjoyable, Renée Zellweger is a joy as Beatrix Potter the children's author who has brought joy to countless children over the years. Her drawings and water colours brought to life literally! Ewan McGregor also gives a good performance but it is Renée Zellweger who makes it magical.
My only wish is that the film was longer to include more of what Beatrix Potter did for the Lake District.
on 5 December 2007
I love this film !! I was very dubious at first and waited ages after renting it before I watched - but what a waste ! I thoroughly enjoyed every minute.
The landscapes are breathtaking, costumes accurate and even the attitudes of people in that time seemed to be captured correctly.
I never read Beatrix Potter's books as a child, but thought that the story of her life was wonderful, if not very sad at points.
She was far more than an author & a remarkable woman for that time.