A Little Chaos

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  • Directed by Alan Rickman
  • 2014UK117 minutesEnglish
  • Prologue by Bob Somers, Scatliff+Miller+Murray

Set in 1682, this visually splendid and “thoroughly pleasant” romantic drama tells the story of Sabine de Barra (Kate Winslet), a talented and strong-willed landscape designer who succeeds in challenging both gender and class stereotypes by building one of the main gardens at the Palace of Versailles for the Sun King, Louis XIV (comically portrayed by actor/director, Alan Rickman). This opportunity leads her down a path of professional and romantic entanglements with the prodigiously cunning André Le Nôtre (b.1613–d.1700), the King’s favourite gardener and landscape architect, whose formal walkways, groves and clearings find new energy in the unexpected twist and turns of their collaboration. Supporting roles well played by Stanley Tucci and (Harry Potter star) Helen McCrory.

“If you see only one film about 17th-century French landscape gardening this year, it probably ought to be A Little Chaos, a heaving bouquet of a picture.”The Telegraph