Set against the backdrop of a country divided, the story follows the four March sisters on their journey from childhood to adulthood while their father is away at war. Under the guidance of their mother Marmee, the girls navigate what it means to be a young woman: from gender roles to sibling rivalry, first love, loss and marriage. Accompanied by the charming boy next door Laurie Laurence, their cantankerous wealthy Aunt March and benevolent neighbor Mr. Laurence, Little Women is a coming-of-age story that is as relevant and engaging today as it was on its original publication in 1868.
Heading the cast are Academy Award nominee Emily Watson (The Theory of Everything, Hilary and Jackie) as Marmee, the devoted mother of the four adolescent March girls; Michael Gambon (Churchill’s Secret, Page Eight) as Mr. Laurence; and Academy Award winner Angela Lansbury (Murder, She Wrote, The Manchurian Candidate) as the March family matriarch, Aunt March.
The March sisters—the “little women” of the title—feature newcomer Maya Hawke as the willful and adventurous Jo; Willa Fitzgerald (“Scream: The TV Series”) as the eldest and most virtuous, Meg; Annes Elwy (King Arthur: Excalibur Rising) as the shy sister, Beth; and Kathryn Newton (“Big Little Lies”) as Amy, the youngest of the family.
Also appearing are Jonah Hauer-King (Howards End) as Laurie, the loveable boy next door; Dylan Baker (The Good Wife) as Mr. March, who is serving as a chaplain with the Union Army; Julian Morris (Mark Felt) as John Brooke, Laurie’s cultured and handsome tutor; and Mark Stanley (Star Wars: The Force Awakens) as the charming Professor Bhaer.
A celebration of family as much as it is a recognition of the challenges of growing up and forging an individual identity, the program remains relevant due to the universal themes at its core. Backed by a nearly all-female creative team, Thomas’ adaptation doesn’t shy away from tackling the darker, more complex emotions the March family experiences. Drawing from a novel that was well ahead of its time the show speaks to current issues as much as it does to the issues women faced at the turn of the 20th century.
Masterpiece Little Women Blu-Ray-$34.99
Masterpiece Little Women DVD-$24.99