The Secret Garden (1993)

Kate Maberly, Maggie Smith, Heydon Prowse, Andrew Knott,
A young, recently-orphaned girl is sent to England after living in India all her life. Once there, she begins to explore her new, seemingly-isolated surroundings -- and its secrets.
  • 7.3 /10.0 IMDB Rating:
  • DatePublished:
  • 2018-09-07 Added:
  • Frances Hodgson Burnett, Caroline Thompson, Writer:
  • Agnieszka Holland, Director:
  • Fred Fuchs, Tom Luddy, Fred Roos, Producer:

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Trailer:

9/10 / 10

While I have called The Secret Garden a family film, that doesn't meanit'sjust for children. It is a film for all ages, and sure to be enjoyed byallof them, too. A vivid and affecting film, it's got many things going forit: mesmerizing cinemetography and time-lapse photography, a good musicscore and script, breathtaking sets, wonderful direction, great acting,evengorgeous flowers! Agneiska Holland does a great job at bringing out allthesubtle little points and details in the story and great performances fromher young cast, particularly from Kate Maberly as Mary. Heydon Prowse isgood, too, as Colin, and so is Maggie Smith as Mrs. Medlock, thefrusterated, overprotective housekeeper who seems to be mean, but reallyisonly doing what she thinks best. One of the few films I've seen that Icancall perfect with conviction; definitely should be seen andappreciated.

/ 10

This movie is one of my all-time favorite movies. I saw this movie about 5times. I saw it with my friend on video tape when we were very young.Everything was beautiful - The cast, director's wonderful skills, music andthe sight of a pretty garden. The girl who played Mary Lennox pulled out herbest performance in this movie, Maggie Smith was as great as ever, the boywho played Collin was the most shining actor in the movie, and Martha was sokind and lovable character. Holland might be one of the most talenteddirectors in the world, I give high points to the art in this movie and thebeautiful music which I have listened to until the list of credits ended wasso appealing to me. Give 10 out of 10.

/ 10

This version of TSG is probably the best ever made. The film is so lovinglydirected by Holland, I've been told that this story was one of her favoritesgrowing up.

Heading a wonderful all-star cast is Kate Maberly as Mary Lennox. Maberlycarried her character beautifully, she didn't appear to be acting as much asactually getting into character. Her attitude and personality changed asthings got better in life. Maggie Smith, one of my personal favoriteactressess, is wonderful as Mrs. Medlock. Others like John Lynch and AndrewKnott add more magic to the production.

Hayden Prowse was wonderful as Colin Craven. Surprisingly enough, this isthe only movie he's ever been in. I certainly wish he acted more often forhe has good talent.

8 out of 10

9/10 / 10

The Secret Garden is a rare treat where in the screenwriter anddirector actually understand their source, The Secret Garden by FrancesHogsden Burnett, and make a translation to the screen that not onlycaptures the essence of the book but enhances the story as well. Toooften directors spoil the story with their own self-interested spin(Little Big Man and Chocolat come immediately to mind)but here is ajewel that leaves the viewer saying "That was as good as the book." Agenuine triumph.

The cast is outstanding, the children in particular, Kate Maberly asMary Lennox above all. Even to the most minor extra everyone brings asmooth and compelling reality to the story.

However, the real star is director Agnieszka Holland. Against achallenging climate ( a rainy location) she manages to create a moviewith a touching commentary on how children can literally change theworld. Her insightful grasp of the themes of isolation, growth andrejuvenation, the need for a balance between nurture and allowable riskare all managed through the controlling metaphor of a garden. Theartful rendering of these literary themes are what many directorsapparently find most challenging ( I'm looking at you Arthur Penn)andgenerally blissfully ignore them compensating by glib insertions, extraaction or clumsy sentiment. Not so here.

Not only is her focus exemplary but the photography is amazing. Theinterplay of light and dark, the time elapse photos of clouds rollingand flowers emerging all set to beautiful music captivate the viewer.The rainy weather was not shunned but used to fullest effect. I canonly imagine the discipline it must have taken to wait for the sun topeep out from the clouds and then roll film hoping that the cast canpull off the shot before the light changed and a second take became along wait. Fortunately all are up to the task and the film, the finalscene in particular, results in a brilliant piece of motion pictureart.

The 1993 version of The Secret Garden is a must for every family filmcollection, one the parents and kids can enjoy for its sophisticationor simply for the great way in which this timeless classic is retold.

/ 10

Right from the beginning, you sympathize with this neglected yet spoiledlittle girl. Normally I adore Maggie Smith, but here the director is soastute, Maggie becomes Medlock and makes your blood boil with herofficiousness and her thin-lipped inability to see or feel for thechildren.Luckily they all fend for themselves and create a world both unbelievableand wholly needed in our dry and hurried lives. It is for films like thesethat I go to the theater. It is because of stories like these that mysleepis peopled with gorgeous landscapes and interesting remarks.