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Last week, I reviewed the audio version of At Home: A Short History of Private Life by Bill Bryson. Tina enjoyed a series of DVDs called Walking Through History where the presenter takes us on walks in England to sites of historical significance.
I’m a fan of Gemma Arterton (Their Finest, Summerland) and I’m fascinated by the Bloomsbury Group, so I’ve been patiently waiting for Vita & Virginia (2018) to show up in the DVD section of our Netflix queue. But it’s been stuck in the Saved queue for years — that’s where movies live until the DVD arrives. I finally decided to stream it. Netflix has it, but it seems to be widely available to stream, either with a subscription or by purchase.
In Vita & Virginia, Arterton plays the first title character, Vita Sackville-West. People with a broader reading experience in English literature will know her for her writing. I know her as the co-creator (with her husband, Harold Nicolson) of the garden at Sissinghurst Castle.
Virginia, of the title, is Virginia Woolf, the author and one-time lover of Vita Sackville-West. Woolf is played by Elizabeth Debicki. She’s set to play Princess Diana in the final two seasons of The Crown. Her portrayal of Virginia Woolf was ethereal, so I’m looking forward to that.
I’m even more embarrassed to say that I haven’t read Woolf than I am that I haven’t read Sackville-West. Oh, I take that back. I read and liked her collection of essays, A Room of One’s Own.
Clearly, I’m more fascinated by the Bloomsbury Group as historical characters than I am of their work — which is probably why I enjoyed this film so much.
Although the story happens in London and Kent, most of the filming locations were in Ireland. Dublin’s famous Georgian doors made good entryways for Bloomsbury houses. I was thrilled to recognize the greenhouses at The National Botanic Gardens of Ireland.
This film didn’t get great reviews, but I thought it was enjoyable for the performances and setting. Perhaps, you’ll like it, too.