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Margaret's Museum (1995)

R | | Drama | 26 January 1996 (USA)
Margaret MacNiel, a girl living in a Cape Breton coal mining town, finds her life changing when she meets Neil Currie, a cheerful bagpipe-playing dishwasher. Unfortunately, neither of them are able to escape the industry around them.


Mort Ransen


Sheldon Currie (story "The Glace Bay Miner's Museum"), Gerald Wexler | 1 more credit »
10 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Helena Bonham Carter ... Margaret MacNeil
Clive Russell ... Neil Currie
Craig Olejnik ... Jimmy MacNeil
Kate Nelligan ... Catherine MacNeil
Kenneth Welsh ... Angus MacNeil
Andrea Morris ... Marilyn
Peter Boretski ... Grandfather Dunald MacNeil
Barrie Dunn Barrie Dunn ... Mr. Campbell
Norma Dell'Agnese ... Mrs. Campbell
Glenn Wadman Glenn Wadman ... Willy
Elizabeth Richardson Elizabeth Richardson ... Sister
Ida Donovan Ida Donovan ... Sarah
Gordon Joe Gordon Joe ... Hum Sing
Wayne Reynolds Wayne Reynolds ... Fraser
Murdoch MacDonald Murdoch MacDonald ... Clerk


In a town where half the men die down the coalpit, Margaret MacNeil is quite happy being single. Until she meets Neil Currie, a charming and sincere bagpipe-playing, Gaelic-speaking dishwasher. But no matter what you do, you can't avoid the spectre of the pit forever. Written by <rosie@ihug.co.nz>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


She found a way to preserve her memories forever.



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong language and some sexuality | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Neil Currie: So what do you think?
Margaret MacNeil: I think your the biggest son of a bitch I ever saw.
Neil Currie: Oh yeah? you know What I think?
Margaret MacNeil: What?
Neil Currie: I think your the smallest son of a bitch I ever Saw.
See more »


Put Me in the Big Chest
Performed by Jenipher Roland
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User Reviews

Just as engrossing the second time around
6 March 2007 | by wisewebwomanSee all my reviews

I saw this first in the theatre, it didn't stay too long, so I was lucky. For the life of me I don't understand how these movies don't get the publicity they deserve. Saint Ralph comes to mind, C.R.A.Z.Y., and the "Hanging Garden" et al. Lovely homegrown efforts with a story line and casting and the kind of breathtaking scenery that doesn't leave your mind for a while.

This is eccentric in the extreme, you wonder where it is going from the outset when a woman leaves a little local museum in Glace Bay, Nova Scotia, screaming her head off.

The story unwinds charmingly and tragically. Helena Bonham Carter sinks her teeth into the role of the sniffling Margaret, all quirky and saucy who captures the heart of the drunken ex-miner bagpiper extraordinaire and Gaelic aficionado, Neil Currie, played by the devilish Clive Russell. Sparks fly, some highly erotic bits between the two. Kate Nelligan as Margaret's mother, plays a hardnosed sarcastic and bitter woman who has lost her husband and a son to the mines and is caring for her elderly father who can't breathe for the coal dust in his lungs.

I won't spoil the story, it winds to its sad and shocking conclusion in its own time, suffice to say that there are many lovely side bits ( a blossoming love story between Margaret's young brother and the daughter of the manager of the mine being one).

8 out of 10. Supporting cast and music were wonderful. A few little story holes that were slightly annoying - an uncle supposedly out on bail for arson back in his old job lickety split and a grandchild that had disappeared - but not enough to detract from an overall fine film. Even the second time around!

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Canada | UK

Release Date:

26 January 1996 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Margaret's Museum See more »

Filming Locations:

Dominion, Nova Scotia, Canada See more »


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