The movie Miss Potter is a family film that is destined to be a classic. This tale is beautifully done, with the characters of Beatrix Potter’s stories brought to life on the screen to form a fantastic supporting cast. Renee Zellweger plays Beatrix Potter, an unmarried woman who lives with her parents in London who paints animals in blue jackets with brass buttons. With her chaperone Miss Wiggin, played by Matyelok Gibbs, Beatrix brings her stories and painting to various publishing houses trying to accomplish something with her life. One house takes on her book and editor Norman Warne, played by Ewan McGregor, helps Beatrix succeed as an author.
Even though Beatrix Potter became a household name with her story of the rabbit in the blue coat with brass buttons, Beatrix did not have the same recognition in her home. Her mother, played by Barbara Flynn, refused to see her daughter as anything than an unmarried woman, and her father, played by Bill Paterson, just saw his young daughter playing with brushes. Beatrix had to learn to stand up to her family and make them listen, and she does that not only with her books, but with her confidence. Beatrix becomes engaged to Norman and in an attempt to prove their love to her parents, agree to wait to marry one summer. Beatrix goes to the Lake District with her parents to wait out the summer, but Norman dies suddenly. Heartbroken, Beatrix moves out of her parents house to the lake district where she bought up the old farms and later donated the land so that it would never be developed.
Zellweger portrays Beatrix Potter very well. Her accent was dead on, and added to the overall story. Emily Watson plays Norman’s sister Millie who becomes Beatrix’s best friend, and also gives a wonderful performance. Peter Rabbit and friends comes to life as Beatrix’s imaginary friends. The animation is well done, and is certain to appeal to children. Having owned many of Potter’s books, this movie very much was like visiting an old friend.
As an independent film, this movie is not in all theaters. If you cannot get out to a theater that shows it, buy it when it comes out. This movie is a keeper.
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