Frances Hodgson Burnett’s classic kids’ book was first made into a movie in 1914, but the most entertaining version is this 1980 one, starring child star Ricky Schroder (now better known as ‘Rick’, and a former star of the very adult TV series NYPD Blue). He, all ruffled blond hair and cheeky-grinned, is Ceddie Errol, an American boy who is the only heir of the Earl of Dorincourt (Guinness). The Earl, getting on a bit, asks that Ceddie and his mum (Booth) come to live with him in England where the boy will become Lord Fauntleroy. Of course, it turns out that Dorincourt is a grumpy old man, but Ceddie soon melts his heart – just in time for a nasty American woman to come along and claim that it is actually her son who is next in line to inherit the estate.
It’s sweet stuff and a nice adaptation of a children’s favourite (actually originally made for US TV) featuring a cast of British talent, including Patrick Stewart, Rachel Kempson and Colin Blakely.
Is Little Lord Fauntleroy suitable for kids? Here are our parents’ notes...