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Heidi Review

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The adventures of an orphan girl living at the beginning of the 20th century, in Switzerland, be it living with eccentric relatives in the Alps, or making new friends in the city.

★★★★★

Frilly hankies at the ready: the much-loved tale of the orphaned child bringing sweetness and light to the Swiss Alps returns to the big screen with this British production.If you’re able to overlook a few ropey child actors and the fact that everyone speaks English, it does have its charms; not least Max Von Sydow in the role of Heidi’s grouchy grandfather. But unlike the many TV series based on Johanna Spyri’s novels, this hurries the plot along too quickly. Grandfather’s turnaround is sudden, and Peter the goatherd has very little to say.There’s a welcome dash of humour in Heidi’s Frankfurt exploits, though, and despite the abrupt ending, the story’s deftly delivered messages about hope and friendship are liable to leave both children and Heidi nostalgics misty-eyed.

Despite its rough edges, this cheery tale of country community should charm families nostalgic for a good-old fashioned message-driven yarn.