Jane Campion's literary biopic tells the true story of Fanny Brawne (Abbie Cornish), a 23-year-old Londoner in 1818 whose independent streak manifests itself through an intense interest and love for fashion and dressmaking. Her neighbor, the struggling but gifted young poet John Keats (Ben Whishaw), underestimates her intelligence because he believes she's frivolous, and she, having no interest in literature, seems thoroughly disinterested in him. However, Fanny attempts to help the Keats family when John's brother becomes gravely ill, and in order to express his gratitude John agrees to teach her poetry -- leading Fanny and John to quickly fall deeply and profoundly in love with each other. Although they wish to wed, his lack of finances and his writing partner (Paul Schneider) -- who believes she is nothing more than an unwelcome distraction -- keep the two from marrying.
by Perry Seibert synopsis