The Secret Garden - Movie Review

The Secret Garden - Image from STX Entertainment

I remember watching The Secret Garden (1993) as a nine year old little girl and being mesmerized by the story.  I probably watched it dozens of times, which back then was a real testament to a movie because, you know, those days involved rewinding the VHS tape!  So imagine my excitement when I heard about a new remake of The Secret Garden coming in 2020 - just as my own child is eight years old and primed for that perfect age of magic.  When I saw that Colin Firth was in the film too. . .swoon!  

You may not know this, but The Secret Garden originated as a book which has been adapted in so many ways.  In fact, I was surprised to hear that it has not only been the films I know as well as two others (for a total of four movie adaptations!), but also a Broadway musical, several plays and four television series - that's a lot of love for the original story written by Frances Hodgson Burnett and a testament to the power of a secret garden on a young girl's life. 

Thank you to my friends at STX Entertainment and Boutique Publicity for providing me with a copy of the film to review!

The Secret Garden - Review




Visually stunning, beautifully told, and magically brought to life - this movie is one that will stand the test of time!  


Talk about a walk down memory lane!  I really enjoyed this adaptation and, while it brought back a lot memories for me, it also took a new spin on the classic story.  So let's start with what's different.  The film has been moved up roughly 30 years into a post-World War II era instead of the Victorian time period it was originally set in.  This decision brought a slightly more modern twist to the movie, but I also had to explain to my boys a little political context for the time period (India and Great Britain's relationship, war ravaged England) so that they understood everything going on.  That certainly wasn't a problem during the movie, but I found myself giving more of a history lesson than I thought I would need to.  

The casting in this movie is spot on.  I do have a deep love of Colin Firth which continues in this film, even though he plays a darker, more brooding character than I'm used to seeing him portray.  The young stars also really rise to the occasion.  Dixie Egerickx delivers a performance that is both real and moving as Mary, the spoiled orphan who learns a lot about love and friendship as the movie progresses.  And Edan Hayhurst does a great job bringing to life Colin - miserable, frustrated, angry, but deep down longing to live.  My other favorite character in the film is Martha played by Isis Davis.  Martha is not afraid to tell Mary how it is despite Mary's attempts to push back.  There is a lot of chemistry among the cast and it's clear that they enjoyed bringing this project to life.

Did you see my interview with Dixie Egerickx and Edan Hayhurst?


Finally, you can't talk about The Secret Garden without reveling at the scenery and the power of the story.  There's a lot of truth to nature having the power to heal the mind, body, and soul and in this movie, it makes that power abundantly clear.   Visually stunning, beautifully told, and magically brought to life - this movie is one that will stand the test of time!  Don't miss this one as it heads to your living room on Aug. 7, 2020 and believe in magic once again.

Click here to grab an Activity Pack for your family to enjoy while watching the film!


About The Secret Garden (from STX Entertainment)



THE SECRET GARDEN starring Colin Firth, Julie Walters and Dixie Egerickx is a new take on the beloved classic novel of the same name written by Frances Hodgson Burnett. Set in England during a new time period in 1947, the film follows a young orphan girl who, after being sent to live with her uncle, discovers a magical garden on the grounds of his estate. Marc Munden is directing the script, which was adapted for the screen by Jack Thorne. David Heyman (Harry Potter franchise, Paddington 1,2) and Rosie Alison (Paddington 1 ,2) are producing and Jane Robertson (The Danish Girl, Bridget Jones’s Baby) is co-producing. StudioCanal’s Ron Halpern, Didier Lupfer, and Dan MacRae are executive producers. STXfilms will distribute THE SECRET GARDEN in the U.S. and Canada. On demand everywhere August 7.