A Little Chaos

A Little Chaos

A Little Chaos

Actor Alan Rickman directs Oscar-winner Kate Winslet in this British period drama about a landscape gardener who wins the contract to construct the grand gardens at Versailles for King Louis XIV. Rickman also co-stars as King Louis, alongside Stanley Tucci and Jennifer Ehle.

Madame Sabine De Barra (Winslet) is an unlikely candidate to be the landscape architect of the still-to-be-completed palace of Versailles. She has little time for the classical designs of the man who hires her; the famous architect Le Notre (Matthias Schoenaerts). However, as she works on her creation, she finds herself drawn to the enigmatic Le Notre and forced to negotiate the perilous rivalries and intricate etiquette of the court of King Louis XIV. Sabine's honesty and compassionate nature help to overcome both the challenges of her new-found popularity and an unspeakable tragedy from her past to win the favour of the Sun King and the heart of Le Notre.

2014Rating: M, Sex scenes117 minsUK
DramaHistorical

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A Little Chaos / Reviews

Flicks, Steve Newall

Flicks, Steve Newall

Although A Little Chaos doesn’t shy away from romance entirely, the bodices most at risk of ripping in this period drama are those sported by Kate Winslet while she gets her hands dirty working on a new addition to the gardens of Versailles. As Sabine De Barra, scoring the highly contested gig to spruce up King Louis XIV’s backyard, Winslet’s a pleasantly capable, self-possessed presence and something of a rarity in that she’s the only woman seen doing any actual work (though this is perhaps unsurprising for landscape gardeners circa 17th Century).

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Variety

Variety

Too often, helmer Rickman galumphs through what’s meant to be a witty romp, underlining the script’s most obvious, rigged qualities.

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The Guardian

The Guardian

Winslet manages emotional honesty within anachronistic confines, and Schoenaerts escapes with dignity.

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Sydney Morning Herald

Sydney Morning Herald

Sometimes it's awkward, sometimes it works. These singular, detached vignettes keep the film interesting, even as its momentum seems to falter, its purpose to be a little unclear.

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Screen Daily

Screen Daily

It lacks real dramatic edge and may be seen as a typical British period costume film, but it is also a classily made pleasure that will delight its target audience.

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Independent

Independent

It takes some doing to waste the talents of two of Europe’s finest actors

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Hollywood Reporter

Hollywood Reporter

Winslet’s mix of grace, gumption and private sadness is the chief reason to keep watching, but she deserves a more dynamic film.

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Empire Magazine

Empire Magazine

Lovely, engaging performances keep the film’s heart beating in a sweet if sometimes listless search for Eden.

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