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Imelda (2009)



Average Rating: 6.8/10
Critic Reviews: 16
Fresh: 14 | Rotten: 2

No consensus yet.



liked it
Average Rating: 3.8/5
User Ratings: 118

My Rating

Movie Info

The debut feature from documentary filmmaker Ramona S. Diaz, Imelda is a profile of one of the most famous and powerful women in recent international history. As told by the woman herself, the film traces the life of Imelda Marcos, focusing intently on her time as the first lady of The Philippines. In addition to accounts from Marcos and her personal associates, the film presents contrasting views of the past from journalists and political adversaries. Imelda had its North American premiere at


Documentary, Special Interest

May 31, 2005

Asian Crush

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All Critics (37) | Top Critics (16) | Fresh (33) | Rotten (2) | DVD (1)

Makes up for what it lacks in political and historical depth by providing a stunning study in the sheer imperviousness of the unchecked and over empowered ego.

October 1, 2004 Full Review Source: Toronto Star
Toronto Star
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Mostly it's Marcos' mysterious sway over those who stood to lose the most from her power, coupled with her amazing inability to face that fact, that makes Imelda maddeningly fascinating.

August 19, 2004 Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles Times
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Diaz's portrait of Imelda Marcos attempts to get beyond the shoe thing, into the gothic heart of 40 years of Philippine politics.

August 19, 2004 Full Review Source: L.A. Weekly
L.A. Weekly
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At its most acridly useful when comparing the former first lady's recollections with others' less sanguine memories.

August 6, 2004 Full Review Source: Boston Globe
Boston Globe
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Even though Marcos, in this film, provides enough material for a few hundred giggles and head-shakings, she also shows a pathetically human side.

July 16, 2004 Full Review Source: Washington Post
Washington Post
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In addition to being a shrewd character study, Diaz's sharply assembled film reminds us that charm can be as toxic as anything else when it comes to acquiring, holding and abusing power.

June 18, 2004
Denver Rocky Mountain News
Top Critic IconTop Critic

If the shoe fits, go for it, Cinderella might advise. But how about 3,000 pairs of them.

May 30, 2007 Full Review
Long Island Press

Imelda is not just in a league of her own, but in a universe of her own.

August 9, 2006 Full Review Source: Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

[Documents] a once-in-a-lifetime development of a certain personality type, the result of which isn't as simple to pin down as we'd expect.

March 2, 2006 Full Review Source: Window to the Movies
Window to the Movies

does history a great service

September 4, 2005 Full Review Source:

Both enlightening and entertaining.

October 1, 2004 Full Review Source: Jam! Movies
Jam! Movies

There may be no new revelations in Imelda, but the film still proves highly instructive in the ways in which power corrupts and politics attracts the opportunistic.

August 20, 2004 Full Review Source: Los Angeles Daily News
Los Angeles Daily News

As glossy as its subject's heavily lacquered trademark coiffure.

August 8, 2004 Full Review Source: Film Journal International
Film Journal International

Instead of enabling Marcos to tell the world how caring she is, the movie gives her enough rope to hang herself, and she does, again and again.

August 6, 2004 Full Review Source: Boston Herald
Boston Herald

Although the fact that Imelda does most of the talking begins to feel like election year rhetoric or just plain propaganda, there's something perversely fascinating in listening to such sincere self-deception.

July 3, 2004 Full Review Source: San Diego Metropolitan
San Diego Metropolitan

The sole conclusion you can make at the end of Diaz's repetitive film is that Madam Marcos is as mad as a hatter.

June 18, 2004 Full Review Source: Boulder Weekly

She emerges as an energetic, narcissistic, and totally self-deluded woman.

June 17, 2004 Full Review Source: Christian Science Monitor
Christian Science Monitor

When she's not babbling about the weird symbological system that rules her personal cosmos Imelda is an entertaining storyteller, vividly describing a life that became a national embarrassment and a camp legend.

June 11, 2004 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

Audience Reviews for Imelda

What a train wreck. I couldn't take my eyes off of this piece. I can't believe that this woman still has any political support. Proves that someone will admire someone merely for the fact of being famous.
February 3, 2010
John Ballantine

Super Reviewer

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