I'm afraid to say that this is one of the poorest costume dramas I have seen in quite long time. As a light biopic of a woman who was fundamental to not only the health and welfare of British soldiers during the Crimean War, but who helped set standards for field medical services around the world - this falls completely flat. Laura Fraser in the title role tries to portray some of the grit and determination of Nightingale, but it just doesn't convince. Andrew Harrison as the scheming PM (Lord Palmerston) and Michael Pennington as "Wen" fare little better - and despite a considerable effort being spent on the detail of costumes etc, it's all just a bit so-what? The frequent interventions of Roy Hudd and his music hall storyline, along with the narration - presumably based on her own letters of the time, could have better served as a conduit for the trials and tribulations of her battles against prejudice and, frequently, downright stupidity - but serve merely as distractions and this film has the overall feel of a movie that is just too fluffy to do justice to the heroine or the horrendous conditions she strove to improve.
Reflective drama of pioneering nurse, writer and noted statistician Florence Nightingale
January 12, 2021