Jane Campion may not have cornered the market on melancholy, but she has definitely shown both a mastery of and a predilection for films that showcase that mood/tone. With Bright Star, however, she infuses the tragic love of Romantic poet John Keats [Ben Whishaw] and Fanny Brawne [Abbie Cornish] with the kind of wit, humor and charm that one expects from a Joe White [Pride & Prejudice].
Keats died at the age of twenty-five, thinking he was a failure, though he is now considered one of – if not the greatest of the Romantic poets. He met Brawne during a fallow period in his writing and, as their mutual attraction grew into love, he regained his creativity. Bright Star is the title of a poem that was, very specifically, about her.