A young, recently-orphaned girl is sent to England after living in India all of her life. Once there, she begins to explore her new, seemingly-isolated surroundings, and its secrets.

Director:

Agnieszka Holland

Writers:

Frances Hodgson Burnett (book), Caroline Thompson (screenplay)
Reviews
Popularity
2,686 ( 752)
Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 3 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kate Maberly ... Mary Lennox
Heydon Prowse Heydon Prowse ... Colin Craven
Andrew Knott ... Dickon
Maggie Smith ... Mrs. Medlock
Laura Crossley Laura Crossley ... Martha
John Lynch ... Lord Archibald Craven
Walter Sparrow ... Ben Weatherstaff
Irène Jacob ... Mary's Mother / Lilias Craven (as Irene Jacob)
Frank Baker Frank Baker ... Government Official
Valerie Hill Valerie Hill ... Cook
Andrea Pickering Andrea Pickering ... Betty Butterworth
Peter Moreton ... Will
Arthur Spreckley Arthur Spreckley ... John
Colin Bruce Colin Bruce ... Major Lennox
Parsan Singh Parsan Singh ... Ayah
Edit

Storyline

Living in India, Mary Lennox (Kate Maberly), a young, privileged girl, is left orphaned when her parents are killed in an earthquake. She is sent back to England where she goes to live on her Uncle Lord Archibald Craven's (John Lynch's) estate. It is a fairly isolated existence and she has to find things to keep herself occupied. She finds sickly young Colin Craven (Heydon Prowse), and a secret garden. Written by grantss

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The timeless tale of a special place where magic, hope, and love grow.

Genres:

Drama | Family | Fantasy

Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The tapestries in Mary's (Kate Maberly's) room comprise a cycle known as "The Hunt for the Unicorn". In this cycle, the unicorn is lured from the wild and into a new life by a young virgin, foreshadowing Mary's role in the story. See more »

Goofs

The scene after the credits shows a key being turned in a lock and a door being pushed open as if it's in the garden. This opens to the left while that into the garden opens to the right. See more »

Quotes

Mrs. Medlock: [to Colin] Your father returns today.
Colin: He won't want to see me.
Mrs. Medlock: Perhaps he will.
See more »

Connections

Version of The Secret Garden (2017) See more »

Soundtracks

Winter Light
Written by Zbigniew Preisner, Linda Ronstadt, and Eric Kaz
Produced by George Massenburg and Linda Ronstadt
Performed by Linda Ronstadt
Courtesy of Elektra Entertainment
See more »

User Reviews

 
Has the rare quality of understanding and enhancing its source
16 January 2006 | by kingtrio9See all my reviews

The Secret Garden is a rare treat where in the screenwriter and director actually understand their source, The Secret Garden by Frances Hogsden Burnett, and make a translation to the screen that not only captures the essence of the book but enhances the story as well. Too often directors spoil the story with their own self-interested spin (Little Big Man and Chocolat come immediately to mind)but here is a jewel that leaves the viewer saying "That was as good as the book." A genuine triumph.

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

However, the real star is director Agnieszka Holland. Against a challenging climate ( a rainy location) she manages to create a movie with a touching commentary on how children can literally change the world. Her insightful grasp of the themes of isolation, growth and rejuvenation, the need for a balance between nurture and allowable risk are all managed through the controlling metaphor of a garden. The artful rendering of these literary themes are what many directors apparently find most challenging ( I'm looking at you Arthur Penn)and generally blissfully ignore them compensating by glib insertions, extra action or clumsy sentiment. Not so here.

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

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


55 of 62 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 115 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »
Edit

Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

13 August 1993 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Secret Garden See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$18,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$4,625,583, 15 August 1993

Gross USA:

$31,181,347

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$31,181,347
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page



Recently Viewed