Recently I saw Many Beautiful Things, a documentary of the life of Lilias Trotter. Trotter was a self-taught artist and a protégé of John Ruskin, who ranked her talent with the great artists of the day. To his great dismay she left England to live in Algiers for most of her adult life, living in the slums and ministering to the women and children there. But she continued to draw and paint exquisite watercolors.
The John Ruskin society contributed to the movie and the film is directed by Laura Waters Hinson (As We Forgive) and produced by Hisao Kurosawa, the son of legendary Japanese director Akira Kurosawa.
The film stars Michelle Dockery (Downton Abbey) as the voice of Lilias Trotter and John Rhys-Davies (Indiana Jones, The Lord of the Rings) as the voice of her mentor, English art critic John Ruskin.
For a movie with almost no action, it is lovely and engaging. The filmography fit the content — the beauty silenced me. Truth sparked beauty and set it aflame.
A serious and beautiful movie that examines a woman torn between pursuit of her art and the needs of the poor.
Check the internet for the movie trailer. DVD release is March 8.