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The Iron Lady (2011)
Meryl Streep wrinkled up for the Iron Lady
"For the first time in the History of the Western World, a woman came to power as a government leader."
"The Iron Lady" shows us most of the personal and historical facts (all the important ones), that lead up to the historical breakthrough mentioned above, and outlined in the movie itself.
Loaded to the brim with real contemporary news footage, The Iron Lady immerses you in the spirit of the 80's, when Margaret Thatcher became Prime-Minister of Great Britain.
You may or not agree with her political views, but in the context of the times, when tough government decisions had to be made, Thatcher comes through as a courageous woman, like indeed few men in her position would have been, and "The Iron Lady" turns out to be a Lesson in International Relations, as well.
I personally disagree with many of her policies and disagreed at the time, when they were on my daily news platter, yet I can't help but totally agree with one, I set forth as an example: you cannot negotiate or back down, when you are at a terrorist's gunpoint, no matter what the cost the total costs in the long run, would always be much greater, otherwise.
In one scene of "The Iron Lady" the American President tries to dissuade Thatcher from making such a big deal out of some tiny islands (The Falklands), lost thousands of miles away overseas... "Yes, just like Hawaii...!", Margaret replies, followed by total and awkward silence...
Political History aside, "The Iron Lady" is a voyage through the personal thoughts ("not feelings, there's too many feelings") of a wrinkled up, Alzheimer stricken, hallucinating, frail old woman, who in her prime-time did well deserve the epitome of "iron Lady" - branded by the Russian ruler, if I remember correctly my own time-lived impressions. "We may be behind an iron curtain, but we are up against an iron Lady!", Gorbatchev was quoted as having said.
However, and above all, the main lesson that comes out of The Iron Lady, is in Meryl Streep's astonishing playact work, bordering on genius, making you forget it's her we're seeing, the brilliant make-up, the cinematography and the way the story is told, in a flashback composition that takes a while for the spectator to settle into, but soon becomes apparent and clear.
Thatcher is presently suffering from psychological disability that takes her into seeing and hearing her deceased husband ("Dennis, you are dead!" "Then who are you talking to?"), and re-living every high-lighted moment of her life since before her career began, as a socially stigmatized "shopkeeper's daughter" on the day she got news of her admittance to Oxford University. That's how the story begins
In short, "The Iron Lady" is a voyage in time and a prime work of Art, having snatched the Oscars for Best leading Actress and Best Make-up, for what may very well be, although the year is young, the movie of the year.
Well done, Meryl!