The Secret Garden

Movie review by Nell Minow, Common Sense Media
The Secret Garden Poster Image

Common Sense says

age 8+

'90s adaptation of classic book has some heavy themes.

G 1993 101 minutes

Parents say

age 8+

Based on 20 reviews

Kids say

age 7+

Based on 20 reviews

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Community Reviews

age 7+

Just about perfect

This matches the quality of the best films for adults, while still being appropriate for children. Highly recommended.
age 8+

Sad but Fantastic

This film is beautiful. I loved it from a very young age. It is definitely sad, but has a happy ending. There’s nothing violent or inappropriate (imo) but younger viewers are may not understand all of what’s happened. The music is lovely and The flowers are beautiful. It is a slower film compared to today’s, but I like that. Plot summary: Mary is a 10 year old girl with rich, neglectful parents. She remarks that she doesn’t know how to cry (a sign of a neglected child). Her parents die early in the film and she’s sent to live with her uncle, a rich lord who has been deeply depressed since his wife’s death. Mary discovers her cousin, Collin-also age 10-in the mansion. Collin was born early when his mother fell off a swing in the “secret garden“ (which is why it has been locked up). Everyone expected (and still expects) him to die, so he has been kept in his room his entire life-he can’t even walk. Mary finds and restores the garden with help from another boy, Dicken, Mary feels deeply connected to the garden, neglected and unwanted, and healing it heals her as well. While her uncle is away, Dicken and Mary takes Collin to the garden and they teach him to walk. His father is overwhelmed with joy when he sees his son outside walking and they all live happily ever after.

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