First made as The Little Princess back in 1939 with Shirley Temple in the lead role, Frances Hodgson Burnett’s book was transformed into a girlie movie delight by Alfonso Cuarón, the Mexican director who also made Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.
When her father goes off to war, young Sara (Matthews) is sent to a private boarding school run by the nasty Miss Minchin (Bron). And when news comes that her father is missing in action, the young girl is forced to act as servant at the school, so she finds solace in an imaginary world, using her fantasies as an escape from reality.
It’s a lovely, often suspenseful tale, and is tackled superbly by Cuarón, who hasn’t approached the film as if it is just for kids, instead directing and delivering a film that is just as enjoyable for grown-ups as younger viewers. A real treat.
Is A Little Princess suitable for kids? Here are our parents’ notes...
There are some war scenes that younger viewers may find upsetting.
Also, the theme of the film – a child possibly losing her father, amongst other girls in similar situations, etc may upset younger children, making this more suitable for the over 8s.