The movie version of the life of Beatrix Potter is delightful and romantic and I enjoyed it very much. All this despite the fact that I imagine it doesn’t come close to penetrating the complex life of this artist, writer, conservationist, breeder, farmer, brilliant mycologist and botanical artist. But it is a good introduction and, I hope, whets the appetite of those fascinated by interesting lives. I’m certainly intrigued and want to read more. The Wikipedia article mentions the biography Beatrix Potter: A Life in Nature, by Linda Lear. This of particular interest as it focuses on her scientific accomplishments. I’ve put it on hold at the library.
The movie missed an opportunity, I think, to give the character a better rounding out. Miss Potter became a housekeeper for her family, because, it seems, they wanted to curtail any intellectual development or her support herself independently. She obviously was intelligent enough to escape this, with her publications.
Renée Zellweger does an excellent job as Beatrix Potter although I wonder at the odd animated bits with her speaking about her “friends” the animals. Was this fanciful reading into the real Beatrix? I wasn’t as impressed with Ewan McGregor and his Norman Warne: he was OK. Perhaps he didn’t have enough camera time to make the impression I would believe necessary to sustain the affection of this remarkable woman. I really enjoyed Emily Watson as Millie Warne (Norman’s sister).
I recommend this movie.
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