The year is 1682 and King Louis XIV (the Sun King) has set his sights on an ambitious landscaping plan for the gardens of his new Palace of Versailles. Sabine De Barra (Kate Winslet), a forthright and talented garden designer finds herself invited to the Kings Court. Met by André Le Notre (Matthias Schoenaerts) he is initially taken back by Sabine’s strong ideas and forward-thinking nature. She is however awarded the task of building one of the main gardens. A journey of self discovery begins for both Sabine and André.
From the start, what looks like two characters whose lives are worlds apart slowly reveals itself to be the awakening of two kindred spirits. Sabine a loner of sorts ticking by through life and André locked in the confines of his rigid lifestyle, two souls destined to find each other. The story is set against the back drop of visually stunning landscapes. As the garden grows, so to does their love for each other.
Directed by Alan Rickman who plays King Louis XIV the cast of characters who tell the story, apart from Sabine, are all true to life. Sabine’s character was created by writer Alison Deegan, formerly an actor with Dublin’s Abbey Theatre. Sabine’s character is brought to life to weave the story of the gardens with that of the love story blossoming between her and André. Shot on a timeline of eight weeks A Little Chaos manages to be a costume drama of epic proportions. Filmed on location in the UK a number of English palaces were used to create a vision of France. Locations include Hampton Court Palace, Blenheim Palace and Ashridge Park.
A Little Chaos is a love story at heart wrapped snuggly in a lattice-work of historical grandeur. Supporting Sabine and André are an accomplished cast of actors including Stanley Tucci who plays the Kings brother Philippe, Helen McCrory who plays Madame La Notre and Jennifer Ehle who plays Madame De Montespan. A Little Chaos is in cinemas now.