Tales of Beatrix Potter (1971) – Review

Tales of Beatrix Potter captures The Royal Ballet's brilliant interpretation of this much-loved children's classic...

The characters of Beatrix Potter dance to life in this live action intrepretation of her stories. Digitally restored from the 1971 original, the film celebrates the wonder of the Royal Ballet and the imagination of Beatrix Potter.

With all the popular characters from her stories present the production is so amazing that it is hard to believe you are watching something that is 40 years old. It begins with Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle in a beautiful scene where she collects her washing and has a merry little dance. It may sound simple, but the design, costume and production is so detailed that it is nothing short of spectacular.

Viewers also get a glimpse of Beatrix herself in the form of a little girl, dreaming and drawing her way into another world. Being choreographed by Sir Frederick Ashton of the Royal Ballet, you can see why these stories have so much appeal, whether it is Jemima Puddleduck or Pigley Bland.

At first it is a little odd that there is no dialogue but that does gradually fade as you take in the ballet. This isn’t really a film or TV piece – it is a filmed ballet and, despite its age, it feels timeless.

Best scene: Jemima Puddleduck and the egg laying.

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