Visually Evocative & Unusual Period Dramas

Renaissance to pre-World War I.
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1.
Angels and Insects (1995)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
In the 1800s a naturalist marries into a family of British country gentry. (116 mins.)
Director: Philip Haas
 
2.
Bright Star (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
The three-year romance between 19th-century poet John Keats and Fanny Brawne near the end of his life. (119 mins.)
Director: Jane Campion
 
3.
Brotherhood of the Wolf (2001)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
In 18th century France, the Chevalier de Fronsac and his native American friend Mani are sent by the King to the Gevaudan province to investigate the killings of hundreds by a mysterious beast. (142 mins.)
Director: Christophe Gans
 
4.
Byzantium (2012)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
Residents of a coastal town learn, with deathly consequences, the secret shared by the two mysterious women who have sought shelter at a local resort. (118 mins.)
Director: Neil Jordan
 
5.
Cloud Atlas (2012)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
An exploration of how the actions of individual lives impact one another in the past, present and future, as one soul is shaped from a killer into a hero, and an act of kindness ripples across centuries to inspire a revolution. (172 mins.)
 
6.
The Countess (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
A 17th century Hungarian countess embarks on a murderous undertaking, with the belief that bathing in the blood of virgins will preserve her beauty. (98 mins.)
Director: Julie Delpy
 
7.
Creation (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
Torn between faith and science, and suffering hallucinations, English naturalist Charles Darwin struggles to complete 'On the Origin of Species' and maintain his relationship with his wife. (108 mins.)
Director: Jon Amiel
 
8.
Crimson Peak (2015)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
In the aftermath of a family tragedy, an aspiring author is torn between love for her childhood friend and the temptation of a mysterious outsider. Trying to escape the ghosts of her past, she is swept away to a house that breathes, bleeds - and remembers. (119 mins.)
 
9.
Farinelli (1994)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
Farinelli, is the artistic name of Carlo Broschi, a young singer in Handel's time. He was castrated in his childhood in order to preserve his voice... (111 mins.)
Director: Gérard Corbiau
 
10.
Viy (2014)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  
An 18th century English cartographer, Jonathan Green, sets out on a journey to map the uncharted lands of Transylvania, only to discover the dark secrets and dangerous creatures hidden in a cursed, fantastical Romanian forest. (127 mins.)
Director: Oleg Stepchenko
 
11.
The Fountain (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
As a modern-day scientist, Tommy is struggling with mortality, desperately searching for the medical breakthrough that will save the life of his cancer-stricken wife, Izzi. (96 mins.)
 
12.
From Hell (2001)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
In Victorian Era London, a troubled clairvoyant police detective investigates the murders by Jack The Ripper. (122 mins.)
 
13.
Gothic (1986)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  
The Shelleys visit Lord Byron and compete to write a horror story. (87 mins.)
Director: Ken Russell
 
14.
Gulf Stream Under the Iceberg (2012)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  
Adam's first wife Lilith is mentioned in ancient Oriental legends, in Talmud and in the medieval books of Cabala... (125 mins.)
 
15.
A Heavenly Vintage (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  
In 19th century France, a peasant winemaker endeavors to create the perfect vintage. (120 mins.)
Director: Niki Caro
 
16.
Immortal Beloved (1994)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
The life and death of the legendary Ludwig van Beethoven. Besides all the work he is known for, the... (121 mins.)
Director: Bernard Rose
 
17.
Mary Reilly (1996)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  
A housemaid falls in love with Dr. Jekyll and his darkly mysterious counterpart, Mr. Hyde. (108 mins.)
Director: Stephen Frears
 
18.
Miss Potter (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
The story of Beatrix Potter, the author of the beloved and best-selling children's book, "The Tale of Peter Rabbit", and her struggle for love, happiness and success. (88 mins.)
Director: Chris Noonan
 
19.
Orlando (1992)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
Young nobleman Orlando is commanded by Queen Elizabeth I to stay forever young. Miraculously, he does just that... (94 mins.)
Director: Sally Potter
 
20.
Pandaemonium (2000)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
Friendship and betrayal between two poets during the French Revolution. (124 mins.)
Director: Julien Temple
 
21.
Perfume: The Story of a Murderer (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
Jean-Baptiste Grenouille, born with a superior olfactory sense, creates the world's finest perfume. His work, however, takes a dark turn as he searches for the ultimate scent. (147 mins.)
Director: Tom Tykwer
 
22.
The Piano (1993)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
A mute woman is sent to 1850s New Zealand along with her young daughter and prized piano for an arranged marriage to a wealthy landowner, but is soon lusted after by a local worker on the plantation. (121 mins.)
Director: Jane Campion
 
23.
Picnic at Hanging Rock (1975)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
During a rural summer picnic, a few students and a teacher from an Australian girls' school vanish without a trace. Their absence frustrates and haunts the people left behind. (115 mins.)
Director: Peter Weir
 
24.
The Red Violin (1998)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
A perfect red-colored violin inspires passion, making its way through three centuries over several owners and countries, eventually ending up at an auction where it may find a new owner. (130 mins.)
 
25.
Sleepy Hollow (1999)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
Ichabod Crane is sent to Sleepy Hollow to investigate the decapitations of 3 people with the culprit being the legendary apparition, the Headless Horseman. (105 mins.)
Director: Tim Burton
 
26.
Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
The infamous story of Benjamin Barker, a.k.a. Sweeney Todd, who sets up a barber shop down in London which is the basis for a sinister partnership with his fellow tenant, Mrs. Lovett. Based on the hit Broadway musical. (116 mins.)
Director: Tim Burton
 
27.
Tous les matins du monde (1991)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
It's late 17th century. The viola da gamba player Monsieur de Sainte Colombe comes home to find that his wife died while he was away... (115 mins.)
Director: Alain Corneau
 
28.
Vidocq (2001)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
Paris. 1830. In the heart of the town, Vidocq, a famous detective, disappeared as he fights the Alchemist... (98 mins.)
Director: Pitof