The Iron Lady Reviews
Lloyd's pacing leaves much to be desired as way too much time is spent establishing that the aged Thatcher is tottering on the edge of senility. Lloyd also chooses to tell the story in a disjointed jumble of recollections that strip away any drama, so instead of an insightful look into one of the strongest willed women of the 20th century (hence the title, something Lloyd should have paid attention to), you get a cliff notes outline of her political career. You come away knowing that she had the typical British stiff upper lip and an amazing resolve, but you never really know the woman - and isn't that the alleged point of a biopic?
The film is like a history class taught by a bad teacher - all date memorization with no human point of reference behind it; so in the end you have a curiosity piece that only satisfies because of yet another skilled performance to add to the Streep canon.
Mediocre Film! Meryl Streep's performance in this movie was phenomenal. Unfortunately the movie was not. If you want to go see a movie about the life and career of Margaret Thatcher do not waste your time. If you want to see an elderly woman struggling with dementia for 2 hours then this is your movie. The movie barely goes over Thatcher's rise to prime minister or her personal life. Instead 80% of the movie focuses on Thatcher's current health state, only showing her confused and disoriented. The movie does a few 5 minute flashes to her past but it probably only amounts to about 25 minutes. Finally I find it despicable that instead of highlighting Thatcher's achievements, Hollywood choose to exploit her dementia a condition she has kept from the public and tried to be extremely private about.
Elderly and a virtual prisoner in her own home due to her concerned staff and daughter Carol, Margaret Thatcher, Britain's first woman prime minister, looks back on her life as she clears out her late husband Denis's clothes for the Oxfam shop. Denis is seen as being her rock as she first enters parliament and then runs for the leadership of the Conservative Party, culminating in her eventual premiereship. Now his ghost joins her to comment on her successes and failures, sometimes to her annoyance, generally to her comfort until ultimately, as the clothes are sent to the charity shop, Denis departs from Margret's life forever.
Exploring the life of former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, there are good performances from all the cast, but it is the screenplay which lets down the rest of the film. It's 'gentle' pace becomes 'slow' and then 'too slow.' And this speed never picks up.
To say nothing of the genre choice. 'The Iron Lady' can't seem to decide between being a bio-pic or a fictional tale using a real life character. This is the film's greatest flaw, and one it never can get over. The real moments of her long tenure as leader of the United Kingdom and her real life, are mixed in, wrongly, with complete nonsense moments.
There are some moments of passionate and visually pleasing pieces of cinematography and background, as well as some wonderful script lines, some real, some not.
But overall, the film is a disappointing tale of a massively powerful woman. Whether you hate her or love her, such a powerful and important person in history, deserves better.
Even Meryl Streep and Jim Broadbent's performances can't save this dreary film, but they do lift it some way.
Honestly this movie has nothing to offer, it doesn't even manage to entertain or educate the viewer. You leave the theaters with nothing to take it, so I suggest you skip this one.
Meryl Streep plays Margaret Thatcher, one most influential women of the 20th century.
Meryl Streep does an good job, as always in her acting skills. But the movie itself lacks all aspects of cinema. Phyllida Lloyd makes a mess , by trying to split the story in two: Margaret's career, and social life, in the end of the day, you would have wished you never seen this movie, it will literally put you to sleep.
Margaret Thatcher: "We will stand on principle, or we will not stand at all."
Unfortunately that is not the movie "Iron Lady" promises to be. The opportunity to tell the story of one of the most fascinating and powerful female politicians ever is missed and that is regrettable. But despite the miss, "Iron Lady" is worth watch to witness a master class performance by one of the best actresses ever: Meryl Streep.
Streep's every move, speech, look captures Margaret Thatcher perfectly. Similar to her transformation into Julia Child, Streep doesn't impersonate, she embodies. She elevates the material and gives the audience a masterful performance that should snap her an elusive 3rd Oscar.
As for the rest of the film, "Iron Lady" has its moments. Phillipa Lloyd seems more interested in telling the story of Thatcher in her later years so the film becomes less about her rise to the most powerful position in Britain and more of a personal drama about old age. That story is done well ... but I wonder how powerful it would have been to see Streep dig deeper into political and governmental machinations vs watching her as an old lady packing her dead husband's belongings.
So go see "Iron Lady" for Streep. She's worth the price of admission alone. Just don't expect to know more about Thatcher than you can already find on Wikipedia.