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A Little Princess (1986)

Maureen Lipman , Amelia Shankley , Carol Wiseman  |  NR |  DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (108 customer reviews)

Price: $167.89 & FREE Shipping. Details
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Product Details

  • Actors: Maureen Lipman, Amelia Shankley, Miriam Margolyes, Annette Badland, Natalie Abbott
  • Directors: Carol Wiseman
  • Writers: Frances Hodgson Burnett
  • Producers: Colin Shindler, Ellen Freyer, Nick Elliott
  • Format: Color, Dolby, Full Screen, Subtitled, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: E1 Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: May 5, 2009
  • Run Time: 163 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (108 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001T46T8I
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #195,643 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "A Little Princess" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

As seen on PBS “Wonderworks” – Starring Maureen Lipman, Miriam Margolyes and Nigel Havers
WINNER, Parents’ Choice Award and BAFTA Award for Best Children’s Program

Amelia Shankley shines as Sara Crewe in this faithful adaptation of the beloved children’s novel by Frances Hodgson Burnett (The Secret Garden). Produced for London Weekend Television, this mini-series fully captures the spirit of the original novel and brings all of its extraordinary characters to life.

Sara Crewe has always been the pampered darling of her doting father, a British Indian Army captain, and the exclusive boarding school she attends. But when her father dies and her fortune is lost, Sara becomes the victim of hardship and cruelty. Through friendship, imagination and her own resolute nature, the “little princess” finds her way back to happiness.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
97 of 99 people found the following review helpful
This is the definitive adaptation of "A Little Princess" to watch! While the film may suffer somewhat from budgetary limitations (the "Banquet Hall" scene never fails to make me cringe,) the value and depth of the story absolutely make up for any shortcomings. This film is great!

I previously owned the VHS version and was surprised to find that the DVD release is not quite the same as the old VHS release. The DVD is apparently the original UK version, split into six separate parts (25 minutes each.) This version has been a long time coming! When this was rebroadcast on PBS, it was re-edited for US audiences into a three part series, using alternative dialogue and extended scenes. The US edit was sold as a three VHS set and a slightly edited-for-religious-content version was available as a one or two VHS set.

In comparing the US and UK cuts, I have to say that the US version is longer but now feels more like a dumbed-down edit to me. Everything in the US cut is explained much more thoroughly. The UK cut contains whole new scenes not found in the US version and I feel that this makes for a broader, more enjoyable plot. It's as if the storyline was trimmed for US audiences and then, the remaining scenes extended to ensure that the condensed storyline was even further explained with precision. Perhaps I'm too harsh -- both cuts certainly have their merits, but I must say that the conclusion is far more poignant and detailed in the UK edit, shown on the DVD.

The picture quality on the DVD release is much better than I was expecting. Audio quality is average, but clear. Subtitles are included under the menu options. Each episode is available under the menu and there is a play-all option, but no special features or extras are included.

While this might not have been exactly what I was expecting, the DVD turned out to be a pleasant surprise.
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46 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Please put on DVD! March 31, 2005
By Viewer
Format:VHS Tape|Verified Purchase
This is the definitive movie version of Frances Hodgson Burnett's classic novel A Little Princess. Amelia Shankley, along with the rest of the cast, do a fantastic job of portraying the riches to rags story of an orphan girl, who goes from every comfort in the world to living in a cold attic and working as a skivie. The whole story revolves around how people should be treated, in every walk of life, be you rich or poor, a lady should always act like a princess, with grace, courage and a large and charitable heart. Lovely music with a touch of sadness to it, beautiful costumes, and sets that look straight out of Victorian England (mud, noise, carriages and all) makes this a gem, a gem that should not be lost. Please set up a site for those of us who would like it on DVD, now that the video is no longer available. The WB version is so inaccurate, it isn't funny. This is the version to watch and own.
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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A joy to watch! March 15, 2009
By Viewer
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I am breathless with excitement! My favourite movie of all time is finally coming out on DVD and it looks like it will be beautiful! This is the ONLY version that is accurate to the book, with an excellent cast and a very true depiction of Victorian life and the various social levels. From upper class down to the scivvy, and everyone in between, this enchanting and heartbreaking story not only is tremendously well done and entertaining, but teaches anyone at any age that being a princess is not about what you have, but rather how you act and treat others. A dream come true!
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
The "Little Princess" is a movie not to be missed by child or adult. Though I'm partial to British productions, and this is one, everyone I have talked to about this film has agreed that it's the very best version yet. Amelia Shankley (now Amelia Curtis) shows incrediable talent. She plays a young girl who faces what life gives her and in the end is rewarded. Simple discription I know, but for you who don't know the story, watch this version. Don't bother with the Shirley Temple or any other version. This one is by far the best.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I tried not to be anything else October 22, 2005
By Emilie
Format:VHS Tape
I saw this over Christmas break from school (so many years ago I can't even remember now) and it changed something in me.

My life wasn't so tough, I had it pretty good, but I was still a little pain in the tush to my family, I resented my school work, I didn't have many friends. What I saw in Sara was character, strength of will, kindness and a generous spirit, which was exactly why the Magic never left her.

I tried to improve myself as a little girl, to be a little like Sara and appriciate all of the blessings that I had.

Amelia Shankley's performance was stellar, and the adaptation of the story was exact. I bought the VHS a few years ago to add to my collection of "Verifiable Childhood Memories" and I sincerely hope it comes out on DVD.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The BEST Family Series EVER! October 24, 2007
Format:VHS Tape|Verified Purchase
Having caught only the last episode of this production on Wonderworks in 1987 and spending the next 12 years searching for the Series on tape, I was very pleased to find it available and bought a copy! Since its loss in moving I am glad to have found it here at [...] and cannot say enough in favour of this production over the Movie version produced in the 1990's. Miss Shankley's portrael of the young orphoned girl, Sarah, is so touching and I admit as an older gentleman that it brought tears to my eyes while watching the program. I would strongly recommend this to any family interested in true family style entertainment without adult words coming from the lips of their children...A Little Princess
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A Timeless Story!
This classic 1986 film version of "A Little Princess" remains one of my favorites to this day.
Based on the 1905 novel by Frances Hodgson Burnett, this adaptation brings to... Read more
Published 3 days ago by R. Smith
5.0 out of 5 stars this particular vintage Little Princess--the one she thinks is best of...
Just what my daughter wanted: this particular vintage Little Princess--the one she thinks is best of all the remakes.
Published 1 month ago by Grammy
5.0 out of 5 stars The best version of this story
This version of the movie - the English version - is our favorite. The whole cast is strong and the story line is better than the other version, in our family's opinion.
Published 2 months ago by Family Man
5.0 out of 5 stars Good movie.
I enjoyed this movie as a kid so much that when I found out there was a DVD copy available, I had to buy it! It's a good classic!
Published 3 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Best version out there!
This is one of the better versions of the movie. Saw the movie years ago as a kid and I have not been able to forget it. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Lori Stark
5.0 out of 5 stars I love it.
I had hoped there was a DVD version, but this VHS version was inexpensive. I had recorded this version of the story from PBS many years ago on VHS, but couldn't get it to run. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Edward T. King
4.0 out of 5 stars Summary
I loved from the first time I saw it on TV. I have been searching for it since then. I am eally very happy with it. Maybe once the DVD version goes down in price i will get that.
Published 7 months ago by Ann Obar
5.0 out of 5 stars Long Awated...
I've loved this version of A Little Princess since I first viewed it on PBS. It took over a decade and a half to publish on DVD, but it was worth the wait. Read more
Published 8 months ago by BohemianGirl
5.0 out of 5 stars Love, love, love this version.
I have always loved this movie and think it is much better than disneys version. It took me awhile to find the actress who plays Sara and had to search the actress on Amazon... Read more
Published 10 months ago by Silenze
5.0 out of 5 stars Favorite from childhood
Awesome family movie. Out of print as I understand. Watched as a child (wonderworks) - can't wait to introduce to my kids. Characters so well played.
Published 11 months ago by whitehouse
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