To observe International Women’s Day in our own way as cinephiles, we encourage you to go on a movie marathon of some biopics about the most iconic women in history. Not sure which ones to watch? We have the second part of our running list for you to check out!
In case you missed Part 1, we thought of looking back at some of the movies we featured for Reel vs. Real in celebration of International Women’s Day yesterday. To continue with our list of movie recommendations for an iconic women biopic marathon, we compiled some fascinating biopics about some of the most influential women monarchs in history:
Perhaps, the best known of Elizabeth I’s cinematic counterparts is Australian actress Cate Blanchett. She first starred as the queen in the 1998 biopic Elizabeth, which was loosely based on the early years of Elizabeth’s reign. For her portrayal of the iconic English monarch in the film, Blanchett earned several Best Actress awards, including a BAFTA and a Golden Globe. In 2007, she reprised her role in a sequel entitled Elizabeth: The Golden Age, which depicted the events of the latter part of Elizabeth’s reign. The film garnered several nominations and won an Academy Award for Best Costume Design. Blanchett, meanwhile, earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Actress, which made her the first female actor to obtain an Academy Award nomination for the portrayal of the same role.
The 2009 period drama film The Young Victoria tells about the early life and reign of Queen Victoria (Emily Blunt) and also explores her marriage to her first cousin, Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha (Rupert Friend). As Princess Victoria of Kent and the heiress presumptive to the throne of her uncle King William IV, she was brought up under the so-called “Kensington System,” a stringent set of rules created by her mother and Sir John Conroy (the comptroller of the Duchess of Kent’s household). Victoria eventually grows spiteful of her mother and Conroy’s oppressive rule over her actions, and becomes rebellious.
Simply titled Marie Antoinette, the 2006 historical film is loosely based on the life of Maria Antonia Josephina Johanna Habsburg (Kirsten Dunst), from the time she was chosen to wed Louis Auguste (Jason Schwartzman), the Dauphin of France and future Louis XVI up to the years leading to the French Revolution. Coppola’s film particularly zooms in into the stifling, unhappy life of Marie Antoinette and the various problems surrounding her married life and court life in Versailles.
An upcoming American-French biopic, entitled Grace of Monaco is set to tell about the crisis of marriage and identity that the former Hollywood star went through, as a result of a dispute between her husband and France’s Charles De Gaulle. The film, directed by Olivier Dahan, will star Nicole Kidman as Grace Kelly and Tim Roth as Rainier III, Prince of Monaco, and is slated to be released on March 14, 2014.
The 2013 biographical drama film Diana, which stars British-Australian actress Naomi Watts for the title role, details the events in the last two years of Princess Diana’s life after her divorce from Prince Charles. Her relationships with heart surgeon Hasnat Khan and Egyptian billionaire Dodi Fayed were depicted in the film as well.