Margaret's Museum

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Margaret's Museum
Margaret's Museum.jpg
Directed byMort Ransen
Produced byMarilyn A. Belec
Written bySheldon Currie (story)
Gerald Wexler & Mort Ransen (screenplay)
StarringHelena Bonham Carter
Clive Russell
Kate Nelligan
Music byMilan Kymlicka
CinematographyVic Sarin
Edited byRita Roy
Distributed byAstra Cinema
Release date
  • 13 September 1995 (1995-09-13)
Running time
114 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom

Margaret's Museum is a 1995 British, Canadian drama film, directed by Mort Ransen and based on Sheldon Currie's novel The Glace Bay Miners' Museum.


Set in the 1940s in Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia, it tells the story of a young girl living in a coal mining town where the death of men from accidents in "the pit" (the mines) has become almost routine. Margaret MacNeil (Helena Bonham Carter) has already lost her father and an older brother and for her, life alone would be preferable to marrying a mine worker—that is until the charming Neil Currie (Clive Russell) shows up. Against the wishes of her hard-bitten mother (Kate Nelligan) they marry, but before long financial woes lead to his doing what every other uneducated young man does in the town: take a job underground. His death in the mine, along with her younger brother, drives Margaret to a mental breakdown and in her surreal world she decides to create a "special" museum to the memories of all those who have died as a result of the horrific mining conditions.


Production notes[edit]

Part of Margaret's Museum was filmed in the UK. It carried significance in the local area of Newtongrange, Scotland as the screen debut of local TV celebrity David MacBeath, who appeared as an extra in the film.

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Ceremony Recipient Category Result
1995 San Sebastián International Film Festival Best Film Won
Vancouver International Film Festival Most Popular Canadian Film Won
1998 Fantasporto Awards Helena Bonham Carter Best Actress Won
1996 Genie Awards Best Motion Picture Nominated
Mort Ransen Best Achievement in Direction Nominated
Clive Russell Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role Nominated
Helena Bonham Carter Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role Won
Kenneth Welsh Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role Won
Kate Nelligan Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role Won
Nicoletta Massone Best Achievement in Costume Design Won
William Fleming
David McHenry
Best Achievement in Art Direction/Production Design Nominated
Vic Sarin Best Achievement in Cinematography Nominated
Milan Kymlicka Best Achievement in Music – Original Score Won
Mort Ransen
Gerald Wexler
Best Screenplay Won

External links[edit]