Movie Review – The Iron Lady (2011)

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Movie Synopsis:

This film recounts the early life, leadership, and declining years of Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, who was known as “The Iron Lady” when in power, and who led Britain through many domestic and international crises while pushing forward with a strong conservative agenda.  The film allows us to see Thatcher’s memories through the lens of her suffering from dementia in her later years, and allows us to learn more about her relationship with her husband as well.

Movie Review:

This film was a great way to review the history of the 1980s when Margaret Thatcher was Prime Minister of Britain, and did a fair job of illustrating some of the major events that happened during that tumultuous decade in the UK and around the world.  That being said, the film did not go into a lot of detail on many of the key Thatcher initiatives, and much of that is due to the fact the writers and director preferred to focus on the issues of Thatcher’s declining health in later years.  Although this is the license of the filmmakers to determine where they want to focus, it was somewhat disappointing they focused here, because there is much of Thatcher’s earlier life and life in leadership that went unsaid, and we therefore didn’t get a full picture of this powerful female leader in the 20th century.  We did however get a somewhat detailed picture of the challenges she faced suffering from dementia, and this is certainly an important topic in today’s world.

Meryl Streep does a phenomenal job playing “The Iron Lady” and is very convincing in the role.  She shows Thatcher’s strengths – and her weaknesses – in equal measure.  Nobody is perfect, or right all the time, and Streep does a great job bringing a full picture to the role.

Supporting cast also did a fantastic job in this film, including Jim Broadbent as husband Denis Thatcher, but at the end of the day it is Streep who carried the film.  And although she did a wonderful job, at the end of the day it is still unfortunate the film left out so much of Thatcher’s decisions and actions that shaped UK and world history.

Overall: 3 stars out of 5 stars.

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