Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Phil sees THE IRON LADY at the Camera 7 Pruneyard-January 22, 2012

Welcome back cinema lovers to Phil's Film Adventures! After seeing five films on Saturday, you'd probably think I would take a day off from watching movies. If you thought that, then you haven't been reading my blog for very long. Sunday morning came and I headed back out to the theaters, this time I went to the Camera 7 in the Pruneyard Campbell where I saw the biopic THE IRON LADY, starring the talented actress Meryl Streep.

Theatrical Movie Poster (2012)
In the film, Streep portrays Margaret Thatcher, the first female British prime minister and the longest-serving of the 20th century (she served from 1979-1990). Her strict conservative policies, hard line against trade unions and tough rhetoric in opposition to the former Soviet Union earned her the nickname the "The Iron Lady." The film begins with Steep's elderly Thatcher in the present day, struggling with dementia as she flashbacks to her past while she reminisces with her dead husband Denis (Jim Broadben). She recalls her youth (actress Alexandra Roach portrays young Margaret with sass, determination, and optimism), working in her father's grocery store in Grantham, her becoming interested in politics thanks to her father, her falling in love with young Denis (Harry Lloyd), and her perseverance to smash through barriers of gender and class to be heard in the male dominated world of politics, with her becoming prime minister and the heavy tolls and sacrifices she had to make, for both England and her own family.

What is so amazing about the film is Streep herself. Is there anyone better to portray Thatcher then her? She embodies the former prime minister. Streep's performance in both extraordinary and fascinating to watch. She brings another side to Thatcher: the human side. While we all know of Thatcher's political career, we know very little of her personal life other than just we've read in books. In the film we really get to know Thatcher on a more personal level, but it's Streep's performance that enables us to feel for her to begin with. Without her acting skills, we the audience wouldn't have been able to sympathize to Thatcher. Just an outstanding acting performance!

The story was well-written, courtesy of Abi Morgan (SHAME) and director Phyllida Lloyd does a great job of bringing the script to life. Lloyd's more famous for helming the 2008 film MAMMA MIA!, which was my number one choice for worst movie released that same year. With this film, Lloyd matured as a director; her vision is more polished, her directing is much cleaner, all these are signs of a director growing into her craft.

THE IRON LADY is a splendid film that I truly enjoyed, as both a film lover and a history buff. People who are into biopics will be pleased with this film. Four out of five stars.

THE IRON LADY  is currently playing in theaters nationwide, including at the Camera Cinemas here in the Bay Area. To view showtimes, visit their website at www.cameracinemas.com

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show


  1. I loved The King's Speech and I'm pretty certain I'm going to love this too. Thank you for reviewing it, hun. I'm glad to hear that you enjoyed it :)

  2. Much has been said of Meryl Streep's performance as Mrs. Thatcher, well it is interesting and it is good, but not in the way most think it is. There is so little insight into Thatcher's personality and no emotional depth, that Streep is left to do little more than mimic her voice, her mannerisams, and thanks to a fine make-up specialist, her appearance. This isn't a performance so much, as an impersonation, a good one indeed, but an impersonation no less. Was Streep worth of the Best Actress Oscar? I don't really think so, an Academy Award should be seen as a standard of excellence, but in all facets of life mistakes are made, and the academy has made more than their fair share over the years.

    "The Iron Lady" was directed by Phyllida Lloyd, from a screenplay by Abi Morgan, who is a highly respected theatre director, her previous film was "Mama Mia!". I have read that miss Lloyd believes Thatcher to have been the most important woman in politics since Elizabeth 1. A valid point of view, not shared by all, but with such a strong belief in her subject, I have to ask, why did she so willingly let her down. A better focused, more interesting, and possibly better acted, movie will some day be made about Margret Thatcher. Until then, it's still best to get your history, even recent history for a good book.