I hadn’t really watched the 1994 Little Women until this week. Apparently I’d seen bits and pieces of it as a kid, because some frames were so familiar to me – and I distinctly remember the cover of the VHS copy we owned. Perhaps that’s why this version in particular feels so nostalgic to me, but I also think there is something inherently warm about this adaptation.
Maybe it’s the performances – Susan Sarandon, Winona Ryder, and Christian Bale are all incredibly talented and well-cast here. But to me it really comes down to the overall aesthetic. The cinematography by Geoffrey Simpson combined with the direction from Gillian Armstrong is just remarkable here. Every frame seems to glow. I can’t believe I’m saying this, but this might take the number one spot from Gerwig’s version for me… which is really saying something.