Meryl Streep is amazing, the real debate is simple, is she the best actor ever? I won’t really get into that here but you can use this movie as proof that she is. Now the woman she plays is rather controversial, Margaret Thatcher was an ultra conservative Prime Minister in England. No matter what you think about her politics, her rise to power and decision making under pressure are very interesting to study and should have been made into a movie.
The film is very much like Leo’s J. Edgar which came out a couple months ago. We follow Thatcher in her later years as a senior citizen. Her mind slowly falling apart but through flashbacks we see her rise as a conservative leader. We also see her relationship with her husband Dennis(Jim Broadbent) who is a lot different than she is. While she had to become cold and strong to rise in politics as a women, her husband was there to help her smile and laugh.
The film is a biopic and it’s pacing is something we’ve seen before. One thing that I really did not enjoy was the films score. Most of the time I don’t notice it or when I do I love it(ex. War Horse), here though the films score is distracting in places. I believe if they simply kept the film more quiet a lot of the scenes would pop out more.
I love history though and this film is filled with it. A lot of Americans either have forgotten or never learned about the Falkland Islands war between Argentina and the UK. The film does focus on that and the IRA in moments and I fully enjoyed it. Still the film slows down and then speeds up too many times. What is funny is that the same problems that plagued J. Edgar slow this film down as well. Still unlike that film The Iron Lady doesn’t really hide the politics, at many places it embraces it, which is the way it should be.
Now the reason to see this film is Streep, her performance is stunning. She blends into Thatcher and you can get caught up in it. There is never a second, and I mean a second where she is not bringing it. When the script slows down or becomes weak she picks it up quickly. She is obviously comfortable with the director Phylida Lloyd who directed Momma Mia. Lloyd does a good job of playing everything in the middle. Never being too negative or positive about Thatcher. Still going that direction never really makes the film stand out. Still everyone should see this for Streep and maybe you’ll learn something about a very important figure in Britain’s history.