Academy Award nominees Sally Hawkins (Happy-Go-Lucky, Blue Jasmine) and Ethan Hawke star in the true story of Maud Lewis, who overcame physical challenges to become one of Canada’s premier folk artists.
Afflicted with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, she spent her early life dismissed for what was presumed to be her limited ability. But her colourful paintings, made on surfaces ranging from beaverboard to cookie sheets, established her as one of our country's premier folk artists.
We first meet Maudie (Hawkins) in Marshalltown, Nova Scotia in 1937, when she is stuck living with her unsympathetic aunt. Desperate to break away, she responds to a local fish peddler's call for a housekeeper. Everett Lewis (Hawke) is disagreeable and initially cruel to Maudie, but the two quickly acknowledge that each is in their own way a social outcast. They need and understand each other. Within weeks, they marry.
One day a summer resident comes calling. She's a New Yorker, wears alluring clothing and talks like Katharine Hepburn. She sees something in Maudie's paintings and commissions one. Suddenly Maudie's pastime is recognised as having real value. People come from far and wide. Eventually her work will hang in the White House.
MAUDIE is a moving film explores Lewis' life in all its heartbreak and triumph. Cinematographer Guy Godfree fills the screen with majestic images of maritime landscape and light, while director Walsh focuses on character, drawing performances of emotional complexity and great physical detail from her leads.
Though set in the past, MAUDIE speaks to the present in many ways — this is, after all, a tale of a woman asserting herself as a generator of both art and commerce. But it is also a story of the power of creativity to transform a life and touch the soul.
Celebrate the very best of folk art and music at the opening night of MAUDIE on Thursday, August 24 at Windsor Cinema. Join us from 6pm for prize giveaways and a performance by folk singer Tania Martin ahead of the 6.30pm screening of Aisling Walsh's biopic about Canadian folk artist Maud Lewis, starring Academy Award nominee Sally Hawkins and Ethan Hawke.