Culture Street


Film Review: Paddington

On December 11, 2014

By Sophia Whitfield

Paddington is based on the much loved children’s books by Michael Bond. It follows the comic misadventures of a young bear from darkest Peru who travels to London in search of a home. Sitting alone under the Lost and Found sign at Paddington station the young bear fears that city life is not quite what he expected.
That is until he meets Mrs Brown (Sally Hawkins) who spies the hand-written label around his neck (Please Look After This Bear. Thank you). Full of kindness and eccentricity Mrs Brown convinces her terribly English husband that they need to take the bear in for the night. Their children are uncertain at the prospect and Mr Brown (Hugh Bonneville) busies himself ensuring that his insurance is up to date with the new addition of a bear in the Brown family home.

The Brown family are portrayed with absolute delight including their two children. Judy (Madeleine Harris) who is in a perpetual state of being embarrassed by every member of her family, and her brother Jonathan (Samuel Joslin) who is restricted to playing with his father’s archaic but safe old toys after an accident which resulted in a broken leg.

Paddington causes lovable havoc in the Brown household but all is threatened when Millicent the taxidermist (Nicole Kidman) sets her sites on poor Paddington.

Throughout the film London is featured in all its beauty and diversity. The Brown’s home in Windsor Gardens is on a street of pastel coloured homes. It’s the kind of house every child dreams of.

Filling out the talented cast is Julie Walter as Mrs Bird, a family member who lives with the Browns, Jim Broadbent as antique dealer Mr Gruber. Michael Gambon and Imelda Staunton are the voices of Paddington’s aunt and uncle and Ben Wishaw is the voice of Paddington.

Anyone who has read Paddington knows he has a passion for marmalade and there is no shortage of it in this film. Families will adore Paddington. On a rainy day like today it is the perfect family outing.

Paddington opens today in cinemas across Australia.

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