This made-for-TV adaptation of Frances Hodgson Burnett's The Secret Garden stars Gennie James as spoiled-rotten Mary Lennox. When her parents die of cholera, Mary is whisked from her home in India to live in the forbidding Victorian mansion of her flint-hearted uncle (Derek Jacobi). Thanks to the friendship--and vivid imagination--of gardener's son Jadrien Steele, Mary learns that life is lived best when one cares for others. At the same time, her uncle begins to act like a human being. The only false note in this otherwise flawless production was the decision to clumsily frame the story with the narration of the adult Mary Lennox. Blessed with a top-rank British cast, including Michael Hordern, Billie Whitelaw, Lucy Gutteridge and Alison Doody (Harrison Ford's vis-a-vis in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, this 1987 Secret Garden was first telecast as a Hallmark Hall of Fame presentation.
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