Directed by: Susanna Nichiarelli, Stars: Romola Garai, Patrick Kennedy, John Gordon Sinclair, Felicity Montagu, Karina Fernandez, Philip Gröning, Katie McGovern, Francis Pardeilhan, Freddy Drabble, 107 min. (La Biennale di Venezia 2020: Venezia 77 – FEDIC Award, Soundtrack Stars Award, Viennale 2020: Features, Donostia – San Sebastián International Film Festival 2020: Perlak)
Karl Marx’s youngest daughter Eleanor is bright, intelligent, passionate and free. Among the first women to link the themes of feminism and socialism, she takes part in the workers’ battles and fights for women’s rights and the abolition of child labor. In 1883 she meets Edward Aveling and her life is crushed by a passionate but tragic love story.
Eleanor’s story gave me an opportunity to explore startlingly contemporary themes within a period context, but to do so properly I was determined to first study and then overturn the clichés of the costume drama. I tried to subvert the image of a Victorian heroine and replace it with a modern, emblematic picture of a woman fighting battles on both the personal front and the world stage. I believe that Eleanor’s story requires delicate irony: her love life was both absurd and tragic, her plight more than familiar to women today. But the story also demands profound respect: Eleanor’s battles and those of her peers are just as modern and urgent today as they were in the past.