Destined to become one of New Zealand's most beloved authors, Janet Frame (Fox) grows up in an impoverished rural community with her parents and siblings. Entranced by the written word, Frame excels at school and attends college, but her painfully shy, deeply introverted personality sets her apart. Increasingly alienated from her peers, Frame winds up confined to a hellish psychiatric ward for eight years. We follow Frame's incredible journey from Topsy-like tot to renowned author on this remarkable voyage of creative self-discovery.
Why we love it
Based on Frame's celebrated autobiographies and lovingly photographed in verdant, coastal New Zealand, this poetically fashioned account of a truly extraordinary life is a testament to the sensitive vision of director Jane Campion ("The Piano"), who fastens onto dark emotional details in Frame's harrowing story. With a deft, moving performance from Kerry Fox, who plays the fragile, childlike Frame with an eccentric purity of heart, and not to mention stunning visuals and exemplary acting from a marvelous cast of pros and amateurs, "Angel" is tailor-made for those who value dense, literate drama.