Biopics of Writers, Poets and Playwright

by ursulahemard | created - 19 Jul 2011 | updated - 2 weeks ago | Public

Biographical Films on Famous Writers/Authors, Playwright and Poets (research started in 2007 and work is still in progress)

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1. Friedrich Schiller - Eine Dichterjugend (1923)

111 min | Biography, Comedy, Drama

Despite his wish to become a pastor, Friedrich Schiller is ordered to join a military school. There, he begins to write poetry...

Director: Curt Goetz | Stars: Theodor Loos, Hermann Vallentin, Isabel Heermann, Max Pategg

Votes: 41

Johann Christoph Friedrich von Schiller (10 November 1759 – 9 May 1805) was a German poet, philosopher, historian, and playwright. During the last seventeen years of his life (1788–1805), Schiller struck up a productive, if complicated, friendship with already famous and influential Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. They frequently discussed issues concerning aesthetics, and Schiller encouraged Goethe to finish works he left as sketches. This relationship and these discussions led to a period now referred to as Weimar Classicism. They also worked together on Die Xenien, a collection of short satirical poems in which both Schiller and Goethe challenge opponents to their philosophical vision.

2. The Beloved Rogue (1927)

99 min | Adventure, Drama, History

François Villon, in his lifetime the most renowned poet in France, is also a prankster, an occasional criminal, and an ardent patriot.

Director: Alan Crosland | Stars: John Barrymore, Conrad Veidt, Marceline Day, Lawson Butt

Votes: 622

François Villon in fifteenth-century French, (c. 1431 – after 5 January 1463) was a French poet, thief, and vagabond. He is perhaps best known for his Testaments and his Ballade des Pendus, written while in prison. The question "Mais où sont les neiges d'antan?", taken from the Ballade des dames du temps jadis and translated by Dante Gabriel Rossetti as "Where are the snows of yesteryear?", is one of the most famous lines of translated secular poetry in the English-speaking world.

3. Voltaire (1933)

TV-G | 72 min | Biography, Drama, History

Writer and philosopher Voltaire, loyal to his king, Louis XV of France, nonetheless writes scathingly of the king's disdain for the rights and needs of his people. Louis admires Voltaire ... See full summary »

Director: John G. Adolfi | Stars: George Arliss, Doris Kenyon, Margaret Lindsay, Alan Mowbray

Votes: 127

François-Marie Arouet (21 November 1694 – 30 May 1778), better known by the pen name VOLTAIRE, was a French Enlightenment writer, historian and philosopher famous for his wit and for his advocacy of civil liberties, including freedom of religion and free trade. Voltaire was a prolific writer, producing works in almost every literary form including plays, poetry, novels, essays, and historical and scientific works. He wrote more than 20,000 letters and more than 2,000 books and pamphlets. He was an outspoken supporter of social reform, despite strict censorship laws and harsh penalties for those who broke them. As a satirical polemicist, he frequently made use of his works to criticize intolerance, religious dogma and the French institutions of his day. Voltaire was one of several Enlightenment figures (along with Montesquieu, John Locke, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, and Émilie du Châtelet) whose works and ideas influenced important thinkers of both the American and French Revolutions.

4. The Barretts of Wimpole Street (1934)

Passed | 109 min | Biography, Drama, Romance

Elizabeth Barrett's tyrannical father has forbidden any of his family to marry. Nevertheless, Elizabeth falls in love with the poet Robert Browning.

Director: Sidney Franklin | Stars: Norma Shearer, Fredric March, Charles Laughton, Maureen O'Sullivan

Votes: 1,288

Elizabeth Barrett Browning (6 March 1806 – 29 June 1861) was one of the most prominent poets of the Victorian era. Her poetry was widely popular in both England and the United States during her lifetime. A collection of her last poems was published by her husband, Robert Browning, shortly after her death.

5. The Life of Emile Zola (1937)

Not Rated | 116 min | Biography, Drama

The biopic of the famous French muckraking writer and his involvement in fighting the injustice of the Dreyfuss Affair.

Director: William Dieterle | Stars: Paul Muni, Gale Sondergaard, Joseph Schildkraut, Gloria Holden

Votes: 5,826

Émile François Zola (2 April 1840 – 29 September 1902) was a French writer, the most important exemplar of the literary school of naturalism and an important contributor to the development of theatrical naturalism. He was a major figure in the political liberalization of France and in the exoneration of the falsely accused and convicted army officer Alfred Dreyfus, which is encapsulated in the renowned newspaper headline J'Accuse.

6. The Childhood of Maxim Gorky (1938)

98 min | Biography, Drama

A drama reveals the great writer's inauspicious early years as an orphan raised by conniving relatives.

Director: Mark Donskoy | Stars: Aleksei Lyarsky, Varvara Massalitinova, Mikhail Troyanovskiy, Elizaveta Alekseeva

Votes: 486

Alexei Maximovich Peshkov (28 March 1868 – 18 June 1936), also known as Maxim Gorky was a Russian, Soviet author, a founder of the Socialist Realism literary method and a political activist.

7. On His Own (1939)

100 min | Biography, Drama

For the family really no money, Alexei began to make a living. Everything was limited to dirty chores, but while reading could end his depression. After hard working experience, he was ... See full summary »

Director: Mark Donskoy | Stars: Aleksei Lyarsky, Irina Zarubina, Varvara Massalitinova, Ye. Lilina

Votes: 155

Alexei Maximovich Peshkov (28 March 1868 – 18 June 1936), also known as Maxim Gorky was a Russian, Soviet author, a founder of the Socialist Realism literary method and a political activist.

8. Moi universitety (1940)

90 min | Biography, Drama

The last installment of Russian director Mark Donskoy's Maxim Gorky trilogy. Having endured a painful youth in The Childhood of Maxim Gorky (1938) and a torturous sojourn as a serf in My ... See full summary »

Director: Mark Donskoy | Stars: Nikolai Valbert, Stepan Kayukov, Nikolai Dorokhin, Nikolai Plotnikov

Votes: 125

Alexei Maximovich Peshkov (28 March 1868 – 18 June 1936), also known as Maxim Gorky was a Russian, Soviet author, a founder of the Socialist Realism literary method and a political activist.

9. The Loves of Edgar Allan Poe (1942)

Approved | 67 min | Biography, Drama

Edgar Allan Poe led an unhappy childhood, broken only by the unceasing devotion of his foster mother, Mrs. Frances Allan, whose loving ministrations gave him courage to carry out his desire... See full summary »

Director: Harry Lachman | Stars: Linda Darnell, Shepperd Strudwick, Virginia Gilmore, Jane Darwell

Votes: 151

Edgar Allan Poe (January 19, 1809 – October 7, 1849) was an American author, poet, editor and literary critic, considered part of the American Romantic Movement.

10. Jack London (1943)

Approved | 94 min | Adventure, Biography, Romance

Episodes in the adventurous life of the American novelist (1876-1916).

Director: Alfred Santell | Stars: Michael O'Shea, Susan Hayward, Osa Massen, Harry Davenport

Votes: 223

John Griffith "Jack" London (born John Griffith Chaney,[1] January 12, 1876 – November 22, 1916)[2][3][4][5] was an American author, journalist, and social activist.

11. The Adventures of Mark Twain (1944)

Approved | 130 min | Adventure, Biography, Drama

The dramatized life of immortal humorist Samuel Langhorne Clemens, better known as Mark Twain, from his days as a riverboat pilot on the Mississippi River until his death in 1910 shortly after Halley's Comet returned.

Director: Irving Rapper | Stars: Fredric March, Alexis Smith, Donald Crisp, Alan Hale

Votes: 817

Samuel Langhorne Clemens (November 30, 1835 – April 21, 1910),[1] better known by his pen name Mark Twain, was an American author and humorist. He is most noted for his novels, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (1876), and its sequel, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1885), the latter often called "the Great American Novel."

12. Devotion (1946)

Approved | 107 min | Biography, Drama

Genius authors Emily and Charlotte Bronte fall in love with their curate as they seek to get their work published.

Director: Curtis Bernhardt | Stars: Olivia de Havilland, Ida Lupino, Paul Henreid, Sydney Greenstreet

Votes: 637

The Brontës (were a 19th century literary family associated with Haworth in the West Riding of Yorkshire, England. The sisters, Charlotte (born 21 April 1816), Emily (born 30 July 1818), and Anne (born 17 January 1820), are well known as a trio of sibling poets and novelists. They originally published their poems and novels under masculine pseudonyms, following the custom of the times practised by female writers. Their stories immediately attracted attention, although not always the best, for their passion and originality. Charlotte's Jane Eyre was the first to know success, while Emily's Wuthering Heights, Anne's The Tenant of Wildfell Hall and other works were later to be accepted as masterpieces of literature.

13. Hans Christian Andersen (1952)

Approved | 112 min | Biography, Family, Musical

The opening scene of the movie describes it best: "Once upon a time there lived in Denmark a great storyteller named Hans Christian Andersen. This is not the story of his life, but a fairy tale about the great spinner of fairy tales."

Director: Charles Vidor | Stars: Danny Kaye, Farley Granger, Zizi Jeanmaire, Joseph Walsh

Votes: 2,869

Hans Christian Andersen, referred to using the initials H. C. Andersen in Denmark and the rest of Scandinavia; April 2, 1805 – August 4, 1875) was a Danish author, fairy tale writer, and poet noted for his children's stories. These include "The Steadfast Tin Soldier", "The Snow Queen", "The Little Mermaid", "Thumbelina", "The Little Match Girl", and "The Ugly Duckling".

14. Beloved Infidel (1959)

Not Rated | 123 min | Drama, Romance

Toward the end of his life, F. Scott Fitzgerald is writing for Hollywood studios to be able to afford the cost of an asylum for his wife. He is also struggling against alcoholism. Into his life comes the famous gossip columnist.

Director: Henry King | Stars: Gregory Peck, Deborah Kerr, Eddie Albert, Philip Ober

Votes: 797

Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald (September 24, 1896 – December 21, 1940) was an American author of novels and short stories, whose works are the paradigm writings of the Jazz Age, a term he coined himself. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest American writers of the 20th century. Fitzgerald is considered a member of the "Lost Generation" of the 1920s. He finished four novels, This Side of Paradise, The Beautiful and Damned, Tender is the Night and his most famous, The Great Gatsby. A fifth, unfinished novel, The Love of the Last Tycoon was published posthumously. Fitzgerald also wrote many short stories that treat themes of youth and promise along with despair and age.

15. The Diary of Anne Frank (1959)

Approved | 180 min | Biography, Drama, Family

During World War II, a teenage Jewish girl named Anne Frank and her family are forced into hiding in the Nazi-occupied Netherlands.

Director: George Stevens | Stars: Millie Perkins, Shelley Winters, Joseph Schildkraut, Richard Beymer

Votes: 10,433 | Gross: $5.01M

Annelies Marie "Anne" Frank (12 June 1929 – early March 1945) is one of the most renowned and most discussed Jewish victims of the Holocaust. Acknowledged for the quality of her writing, her diary has become one of the world's most widely read books, and has been the basis for several plays and films.

16. The Trials of Oscar Wilde (1960)

PG | 123 min | Biography, Drama, History

At the height of his fame, Oscar Wilde angers the Marquis of Queensberry by having what is (correctly) believed to be a romantic relationship with Queensberry's son Lord Alfred Douglas ("... See full summary »

Director: Ken Hughes | Stars: Peter Finch, Yvonne Mitchell, James Mason, Nigel Patrick

Votes: 655

Oscar Fingal O'Flahertie Wills Wilde (16 October 1854 – 30 November 1900) was an Irish writer and poet. After writing in different forms throughout the 1880s, he became one of London's most popular playwrights in the early 1890s. Today he is remembered for his epigrams, plays and the circumstances of his imprisonment, followed by his early death.

17. The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm (1962)

G | 135 min | Animation, Adventure, Biography

The story of Wilhelm and Jacob Grimm, and three of their stories...

Directors: Henry Levin, George Pal | Stars: Laurence Harvey, Claire Bloom, Karlheinz Böhm, Walter Slezak

Votes: 1,240 | Gross: $14.17M

The Brothers Grimm (German: Die Brüder Grimm or Die Gebrüder Grimm), Jacob Grimm (January 4, 1785 – September 20, 1863) and Wilhelm Grimm (February 24, 1786 – December 16, 1859), were German academics, linguists and cultural researchers who collected folklore and published several collections of it as Grimm's Fairy Tales, which became very popular.

18. The Color of Pomegranates (1969)

Not Rated | 79 min | Biography, Drama, History

A super-stylized, surreal biography of Armenian troubadour Sayat Nova, whose life is depicted through non-narrative amalgamations of poetic images.

Director: Sergei Parajanov | Stars: Sofiko Chiaureli, Melkon Alekyan, Vilen Galstyan, Gogi Gegechkori

Votes: 6,368

Sayat-Nova (14 June 1712, Tiflis – died 22 September 1795, Haghpat), was an Armenian poet, musician and ashik who had compositions in a number of languages. His adopted name Sayat Nova meant "Master of Songs" in Persian.

19. The Spectre of Edgar Allan Poe (1974)

PG | 89 min | Drama, Horror

Poe's fiance, Lenore, falls into a coma and is taken for dead. She is rescued at the last possible moment from being buried alive, but the experience has driven her insane. On the advice of... See full summary »

Director: Mohy Quandour | Stars: Robert Walker Jr., Cesar Romero, Tom Drake, Carol Ohmart

Votes: 64

Edgar Allan Poe (January 19, 1809 – October 7, 1849) was an American author, poet, editor and literary critic, considered part of the American Romantic Movement.

20. F. Scott Fitzgerald and 'The Last of the Belles' (1974 TV Movie)

98 min | Biography, Drama, Romance

A semi-fictional account of how writer F. Scott Fitzgerald met his wife while he was in the army and stationed in Alabama in 1919.

Director: George Schaefer | Stars: Richard Chamberlain, Blythe Danner, Susan Sarandon, David Huffman

Votes: 203

Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald (September 24, 1896 – December 21, 1940) was an American author of novels and short stories, whose works are the paradigm writings of the Jazz Age, a term he coined himself. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest American writers of the 20th century. Fitzgerald is considered a member of the "Lost Generation" of the 1920s. He finished four novels, This Side of Paradise, The Beautiful and Damned, Tender is the Night and his most famous, The Great Gatsby. A fifth, unfinished novel, The Love of the Last Tycoon was published posthumously. Fitzgerald also wrote many short stories that treat themes of youth and promise along with despair and age.

21. F. Scott Fitzgerald in Hollywood (1975 TV Movie)

100 min | Biography, Drama, Romance

The story of author F. Scott Fitzgerald's two stays in Hollywood to write for films, once in 1927 at the height of his acclaim, and again in 1937 when he arrived with little money, enormous expenses and an ill wife.

Director: Anthony Page | Stars: Jason Miller, Tuesday Weld, Julia Foster, Dolores Sutton

Votes: 22

Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald (September 24, 1896 – December 21, 1940) was an American author of novels and short stories, whose works are the paradigm writings of the Jazz Age, a term he coined himself. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest American writers of the 20th century. Fitzgerald is considered a member of the "Lost Generation" of the 1920s. He finished four novels, This Side of Paradise, The Beautiful and Damned, Tender is the Night and his most famous, The Great Gatsby. A fifth, unfinished novel, The Love of the Last Tycoon was published posthumously. Fitzgerald also wrote many short stories that treat themes of youth and promise along with despair and age.

22. The Belle of Amherst (1976 TV Movie)

Not Rated | 90 min | Biography, Drama

Portrait of 19th century American poet Emily Dickinson based on her poems, letters and notes. This is a taped broadcast of a live one-woman performance.

Director: Charles S. Dubin | Star: Julie Harris

Votes: 103

Emily Elizabeth Dickinson (December 10, 1830 – May 15, 1886) was an American poet. Born in Amherst, Massachusetts, to a successful family with strong community ties, she lived a mostly introverted and reclusive life. After she studied at the Amherst Academy for seven years in her youth, she spent a short time at Mount Holyoke Female Seminary before returning to her family's house in Amherst. Thought of as an eccentric by the locals, she became known for her penchant for white clothing and her reluctance to greet guests or, later in life, even leave her room. Most of her friendships were therefore carried out by correspondence.

23. Julia (1977)

PG | 117 min | Drama

58 Metascore

At the behest of an old and dear friend, playwright Lillian Hellman undertakes a dangerous mission to smuggle funds into Nazi Germany.

Director: Fred Zinnemann | Stars: Jane Fonda, Vanessa Redgrave, Jason Robards, Maximilian Schell

Votes: 7,565

Lillian Florence “Lily” Hellman (June 20, 1905 – June 30, 1984) was an American playwright, linked throughout her life with many left-wing causes. She was romantically involved for 30 years with mystery and crime writer Dashiell Hammett (and was the inspiration for his character Nora Charles), and was also a long-time friend and literary executor of author Dorothy Parker.

24. A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (1977)

Not Rated | 98 min | Drama

Stephen Dedalus is a young man growing up in Ireland in the early part of the 20th century. His search for knowledge and undestanding, and the decline of his family's circumstances, lead ... See full summary »

Director: Joseph Strick | Stars: Bosco Hogan, T.P. McKenna, John Gielgud, Rosaleen Linehan

Votes: 175

James Augustine Aloysius Joyce (2 February 1882 – 13 January 1941) was an Irish novelist and poet, considered to be one of the most influential writers in the modernist avant-garde of the early 20th century. Joyce is best known for Ulysses (1922), a landmark novel which perfected his stream of consciousness technique and combined nearly every literary device available in a modern re-telling of The Odyssey. Other major works are the short-story collection Dubliners (1914), and the novels A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (1916) and Finnegans Wake (1939). His complete oeuvre includes three books of poetry, a play, occasional journalism, and his published letters.

25. Stevie (1978)

PG | 102 min | Biography, Drama

This biographical film has Glenda Jackson portraying a British poet with emotional problems.

Director: Robert Enders | Stars: Glenda Jackson, Mona Washbourne, Alec McCowen, Trevor Howard

Votes: 354

Florence Margaret Smith, known as Stevie Smith (20 September 1902 – 7 March 1971) was an English poet and novelist.

26. Molière (1978)

260 min | Biography, Drama, History

Who was Moliere? He is known everywhere as one of the world's greatest playwrights. But who was he? Born Jean-Baptiste Poquelin in 1622, the son of a prosperous tapestry maker. His mother ... See full summary »

Director: Ariane Mnouchkine | Stars: Philippe Caubère, Marie-Françoise Audollent, Frédéric Ladonne, Odile Cointepas

Votes: 688

Jean-Baptiste Poquelin, known by his stage name Molière, (January 15, 1622 – February 17, 1673) was a French playwright and actor who is considered to be one of the greatest masters of comedy in Western literature.[1] Among Molière's best-known works are Le Misanthrope (The Misanthrope), L'École des femmes (The School for Wives), Tartuffe ou L'Imposteur, (Tartuffe or the Hypocrite), L'Avare (The Miser), Le Malade imaginaire (The Imaginary Invalid), and Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme (The Bourgeois Gentleman).

27. My Brilliant Career (1979)

G | 100 min | Biography, Drama, Romance

Sybylla Melvyn is an independent young woman who soon after arriving to live with her Grandmother Bossier and aunt Helen announces that she will never marry and plans on having a career ... See full summary »

Director: Gillian Armstrong | Stars: Judy Davis, Sam Neill, Wendy Hughes, Robert Grubb

Votes: 2,894

Miles Franklin (born "Stella Maria Sarah Miles Franklin"; 14 October 1879 – 19 September 1954) was an Australian writer and feminist who is best known for her autobiographical novel, My Brilliant Career, published in 1901. While she wrote throughout her life, her other major literary success, All That Swagger, was not published until 1936. She was committed to the development of a uniquely Australian form of literature, and she actively pursued this goal by supporting writers, literary journals, and writers' organisations. She has had a long-lasting impact on Australian literary life through her endowment of a major literary award known as the Miles Franklin Award.

28. Agatha (1979)

PG | 105 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller

A fictional account of the real life, eleven day, never explained 1926 disappearance of famed murder mystery writer Agatha Christie is presented. On a cold winter day, her damaged car with ... See full summary »

Director: Michael Apted | Stars: Dustin Hoffman, Vanessa Redgrave, Timothy Dalton, Helen Morse

Votes: 2,411

Agatha Christie, DBE, (15 September 1890 – 12 January 1976), was a British crime writer of novels, short stories, and plays. She also wrote romances under the name Mary Westmacott, but she is best remembered for her 80 detective novels—especially those featuring Hercule Poirot and Miss Jane Marple—and her successful West End theatre plays.

29. Les soeurs Brontë (1979)

Not Rated | 120 min | Biography, Drama

In a small presbytery in Yorkshire, living under the watchful eyes of their aunt and father, a strict Anglican pastor, the Bronte sisters write their first works and quickly become literary sensations.

Director: André Téchiné | Stars: Isabelle Adjani, Marie-France Pisier, Isabelle Huppert, Pascal Greggory

Votes: 681

The Brontës (were a 19th century literary family associated with Haworth in the West Riding of Yorkshire, England. The sisters, Charlotte (born 21 April 1816), Emily (born 30 July 1818), and Anne (born 17 January 1820), are well known as a trio of sibling poets and novelists. They originally published their poems and novels under masculine pseudonyms, following the custom of the times practised by female writers. Their stories immediately attracted attention, although not always the best, for their passion and originality. Charlotte's Jane Eyre was the first to know success, while Emily's Wuthering Heights, Anne's The Tenant of Wildfell Hall and other works were later to be accepted as masterpieces of literature.

30. Céleste (1980)

107 min | Biography, Drama

In 1914, with men gone to war, Marcel Proust hired Céleste Albaret as his attendant. More than eight years later, she was at his side when he died. During this entire time, she only entered... See full summary »

Director: Percy Adlon | Stars: Eva Mattes, Jürgen Arndt, Norbert Wartha, Wolf Euba

Votes: 139

Valentin Louis Georges Eugène Marcel Proust (10 July 1871 – 18 November 1922) was a French novelist, critic, and essayist best known for his monumental 'À la recherche du temps perdu' (In Search of Lost Time; earlier translated as Remembrance of Things Past). It was published in seven parts between 1913 and 1927.

31. Heart Beat (1980)

R | 110 min | Drama

The life and friendship between the icons of the Beat Generation - Neal Cassady, Carloyn Cassady and Jack Kerouac.

Director: John Byrum | Stars: Nick Nolte, Sissy Spacek, John Heard, Ray Sharkey

Votes: 520

Jean-Louis "Jack" Kerouac (March 12, 1922 – October 21, 1969) was an American novelist and poet. He is considered a literary iconoclast and a pioneer of the Beat Generation.

32. Priest of Love (1981)

R | 125 min | Biography, Drama, Romance

Following the banning and burning of his novel, "The Rainbow", D.H. Lawrence and his wife, Frieda, move to the United States, and then to Mexico. When Lawrence contracts tuberculosis, they ... See full summary »

Director: Christopher Miles | Stars: Janet Suzman, Ian McKellen, Graham Faulkner, Niall Padden

Votes: 221

David Herbert Richards Lawrence (11 September 1885 – 2 March 1930) was an English novelist, poet, playwright, essayist, literary critic and painter. His collected works represent an extended reflection upon the dehumanising effects of modernity and industrialization. In them, Lawrence confronts issues relating to emotional health and vitality, spontaneity, and instinct. Lawrence's opinions earned him many enemies and he endured official persecution, censorship, and misrepresentation of his creative work throughout the second half of his life, much of which he spent in a voluntary exile he called his "savage pilgrimage." At the time of his death, his public reputation was that of a pornographer who had wasted his considerable talents. E. M. Forster, in an obituary notice, challenged this widely held view, describing him as, "The greatest imaginative novelist of our generation." Later, the influential Cambridge critic F. R. Leavis championed both his artistic integrity and his moral seriousness, placing much of Lawrence's fiction within the canonical "great tradition" of the English novel. Lawrence is now valued by many as a visionary thinker and significant representative of modernism in English literature.

33. Hammett (1982)

PG | 97 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

61 Metascore

Fictional account of real-life mystery writer Dashiell Hammett, and his involvement in the investigation of a beautiful Chinese cabaret actress' mysterious disappearance in San Francisco.

Director: Wim Wenders | Stars: Frederic Forrest, Peter Boyle, Marilu Henner, Roy Kinnear

Votes: 2,511 | Gross: $0.04M

Samuel Dashiell Hammett (May 27, 1894 – January 10, 1961) was an American author of hard-boiled detective novels and short stories, and political activist. Among the enduring characters he created are Sam Spade (The Maltese Falcon), Nick and Nora Charles (The Thin Man), and the Continental Op (Red Harvest and The Dain Curse).

34. Cross Creek (1983)

PG | 127 min | Biography, Drama, Romance

In 1930's Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings moves to Florida's backwaters to write in peace. She feels bothered by affectionate men, editor and confused neighbors, but soon she connects and writes The Yearling, a classic of American literature.

Director: Martin Ritt | Stars: Mary Steenburgen, Rip Torn, Peter Coyote, Dana Hill

Votes: 1,244 | Gross: $0.20M

Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings (August 8, 1896 – December 14, 1953) was an American author who lived in rural Florida and wrote novels with rural themes and settings. Her best known work, The Yearling, about a boy who adopts an orphaned fawn, won a Pulitzer Prize for fiction in 1939 and was later made into a movie, also known as The Yearling. The book was written long before the concept of young-adult fiction, but is now commonly included in teen-reading lists.

35. James Joyce's Women (1985)

R | 88 min | Drama

In this tribute to James Joyce, Fionnula Flanagan gives a tour-de-force performance as a half-dozen or so women in Joyce's real and fictional worlds. When she portrays his wife Nora ... See full summary »

Director: Michael Pearce | Stars: Fionnula Flanagan, Chris O'Neill, James E. O'Grady, Tony Lyons

Votes: 98 | Gross: $0.38M

James Augustine Aloysius Joyce (2 February 1882 – 13 January 1941) was an Irish novelist and poet, considered to be one of the most influential writers in the modernist avant-garde of the early 20th century. Joyce is best known for Ulysses (1922), a landmark novel which perfected his stream of consciousness technique and combined nearly every literary device available in a modern re-telling of The Odyssey. Other major works are the short-story collection Dubliners (1914), and the novels A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (1916) and Finnegans Wake (1939). His complete oeuvre includes three books of poetry, a play, occasional journalism, and his published letters.

36. Oscar (1985)

120 min | Biography, Drama

Biography of Irish writer Oscar Wilde.

Stars: Michael Gambon, Robin McCallum, Tim Hardy, Karl Howman

Votes: 28

Oscar Fingal O'Flahertie Wills Wilde (16 October 1854 – 30 November 1900) was an Irish writer and poet. After writing in different forms throughout the 1880s, he became one of London's most popular playwrights in the early 1890s. Today he is remembered for his epigrams, plays and the circumstances of his imprisonment, followed by his early death.

37. Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters (1985)

R | 120 min | Biography, Drama

A fictionalized account in four chapters of the life of celebrated Japanese writer Yukio Mishima.

Director: Paul Schrader | Stars: Ken Ogata, Masayuki Shionoya, Hiroshi Mikami, Junya Fukuda

Votes: 6,167 | Gross: $0.44M

Yukio Mishima (三島 由紀夫 Mishima Yukio?) was the pen name of Kimitake Hiraoka (平岡 公威 Hiraoka Kimitake?, January 14, 1925–November 25, 1970), a Japanese author, poet, playwright, actor and film director, also remembered for his ritual suicide by seppuku after a failed coup d'état. Nominated three times for the Nobel Prize in Literature, Mishima was internationally famous and is considered one of the most important Japanese authors of the 20th century, whose avant-garde work displayed a blending of modern and traditional aesthetics that broke cultural boundaries, with a focus on sexuality, death, and political change.

38. Shadowlands (1985 TV Movie)

92 min | Biography, Drama, Romance

Noted author and scholar finds love, then must endure its loss...

Director: Norman Stone | Stars: Joss Ackland, Claire Bloom, David Waller, Rupert Baderman

Votes: 376

Clive Staples Lewis (29 November 1898 – 22 November 1963), commonly referred to as C. S. Lewis and known to his friends and family as "Jack", was a British novelist, academic, medievalist, literary critic, essayist, lay theologian and Christian apologist. He is well known for his fictional work, especially The Screwtape Letters, The Chronicles of Narnia and The Space Trilogy.

39. Meteoro kai skia (1985)

Not Rated | 101 min | Biography, Drama

A documentary about the rise and fall of Greek's most esteemed poet, Napoleon Lapathiotis.

Director: Takis Spetsiotis | Stars: Takis Moschos, Yiorgos Kendros, Michail Marmarinos, Nikos Alexiou

Votes: 47

Napoleon Lapathiotis (Ναπολέων Λαπαθιώτης; 31 October 1888 – 7 January 1944) was a Greek poet. A native of Athens, he began writing and publishing poetry when he was eleven. In 1907, along with others, he established the Igiso (Ἡγησώ, from the Attic Greek name Hēgēso) magazine, in which he published his works. In 1909, he graduated from the law school of the University of Athens. His first book of poems was published in 1939.

40. Dreamchild (1985)

PG | 94 min | Biography, Comedy, Drama

Exploring the somewhat darker and more mysterious side of the Lewis Carroll's classic book, the movie follows Alice Liddell (the book's inspiration) as an old woman who is haunted by the ... See full summary »

Director: Gavin Millar | Stars: Coral Browne, Ian Holm, Peter Gallagher, Caris Corfman

Votes: 1,273 | Gross: $1.22M

Charles Lutwidge Dodgson (27 January 1832 – 14 January 1898), better known by the pseudonym Lewis Carroll, was an English author, mathematician, logician, Anglican deacon and photographer. His most famous writings are Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and its sequel Through the Looking-Glass, as well as the poems "The Hunting of the Snark" and "Jabberwocky", all examples of the genre of literary nonsense. He is noted for his facility at word play, logic, and fantasy, and there are societies dedicated to the enjoyment and promotion of his works and the investigation of his life in many parts of the world, including the United Kingdom, Japan, the United States, and New Zealand.

41. Out of Africa (1985)

PG | 161 min | Biography, Drama, Romance

In 20th-century colonial Kenya, a Danish baroness/plantation owner has a passionate love affair with a free-spirited big-game hunter.

Director: Sydney Pollack | Stars: Meryl Streep, Robert Redford, Klaus Maria Brandauer, Michael Kitchen

Votes: 60,013 | Gross: $87.10M

Baroness Karen von Blixen-Finecke (17 April 1885 – 7 September 1962), née Karen Christenze Dinesen, was a Danish author also known by her pen name Isak Dinesen. She also wrote under the pen names Osceola and Pierre Andrézel. Blixen wrote works in both Danish and in English. Blixen is best known for Out of Africa, her account of living in Kenya, and one of her stories, Babette's Feast, both of which have been adapted into highly acclaimed, Academy Award-winning motion pictures. Prior to the release of the first film, she was noted for her Seven Gothic Tales, for which she is also known in Denmark. Peter Englund, permanent secretary of the Swedish Academy, described as "a mistake" that Blixen was not awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature during the 1930s.

42. Coming Through (1985 TV Movie)

Not Rated | 80 min | Drama, Romance

Celebrated actors Kenneth Branagh (Hamlet) and Helen Mirren (Prime Suspect) star in this film by award-winning playwright Alan Plater about one of the great love affairs and greatest ... See full summary »

Director: Peter Barber-Fleming | Stars: Kenneth Branagh, Helen Mirren, Alison Steadman, Philip Martin Brown

Votes: 148

David Herbert Richards Lawrence (11 September 1885 – 2 March 1930) was an English novelist, poet, playwright, essayist, literary critic and painter. His collected works represent an extended reflection upon the dehumanising effects of modernity and industrialisation. In them, Lawrence confronts issues relating to emotional health and vitality, spontaneity, and instinct.

43. Poslednyaya doroga (1986)

101 min | Biography, Drama, History

About the death of Aleksandr Pushkin, the leading poet and writer of Russia, who was shot on a duel and died when he was 37.

Director: Leonid Menaker | Stars: Aleksandr Kalyagin, Vadim Medvedev, Irina Kupchenko, Yelena Karadzhova

Votes: 66

Alexander Sergeyevich Pushkin (6 June 1799 – 10 February [O.S. 29 January] 1837) was a Russian author of the Romantic era who is considered by many to be the greatest Russian poet and the founder of modern Russian literature. Pushkin pioneered the use of vernacular speech in his poems and plays, creating a style of storytelling—mixing drama, romance, and satire—associated with Russian literature ever since and greatly influencing later Russian writers. He also wrote historical fiction.

44. Gothic (1986)

R | 87 min | Horror

The Shelleys visit Lord Byron and compete to write a horror story.

Director: Ken Russell | Stars: Gabriel Byrne, Julian Sands, Natasha Richardson, Myriam Cyr

Votes: 6,081 | Gross: $0.92M

Mary Shelley (née Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin; 30 August 1797 – 1 February 1851) was a British novelist, short story writer, dramatist, essayist, biographer, and travel writer, best known for her Gothic novel Frankenstein: or, The Modern Prometheus (1818). She also edited and promoted the works of her husband, the Romantic poet and philosopher Percy Bysshe Shelley.

45. Barfly (1987)

R | 100 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

Based on the life of successful poet Charles Bukowski and his exploits in Hollywood during the 60s, 70s, and 80s.

Director: Barbet Schroeder | Stars: Mickey Rourke, Faye Dunaway, Alice Krige, Jack Nance

Votes: 16,149 | Gross: $3.22M

Henry Charles Bukowski (born Heinrich Karl Bukowski; August 16, 1920 – March 9, 1994) was an American poet, novelist and short story writer. His writing was influenced by the social, cultural and economic ambience of his home city of Los Angeles. It is marked by an emphasis on the ordinary lives of poor Americans, the act of writing, alcohol, relationships with women and the drudgery of work. Bukowski wrote thousands of poems, hundreds of short stories and six novels, eventually publishing over sixty books. In 1986 Time called Bukowski a "laureate of American lowlife".

46. American Playhouse (1981– )
Episode: Waiting for the Moon (1987)

PG | 88 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

Sundance prizewinner. Fictionalized portrait of one of history's great literary couples: Stein & Toklas. Summer 1930s France, Alice tends to ailing Gertrude; they visit Fernande Olivier, ... See full summary »

Director: Jill Godmilow | Stars: Linda Hunt, Linda Bassett, Jacques Boudet, Andrew McCarthy

Votes: 147 | Gross: $0.75M

Gertrude Stein (February 3, 1874 – July 27, 1946) was an American writer, poet and art collector who spent most of her life in France.

47. Kangaroo (1986)

R | 108 min | Drama

A mild-mannered English conscientious objector moves to what he feels will be the relative calm of Australia after World War I, but gets caught in the middle of violent battles between the rising trade unions and fascist groups.

Director: Tim Burstall | Stars: Colin Friels, Judy Davis, John Walton, Julie Nihill

Votes: 170 | Gross: $0.43M

David Herbert Richards Lawrence (11 September 1885 – 2 March 1930) was an English novelist, poet, playwright, essayist, literary critic and painter. His collected works represent an extended reflection upon the dehumanising effects of modernity and industrialisation. In them, Lawrence confronts issues relating to emotional health and vitality, spontaneity, and instinct.

48. Haunted Summer (1988)

R | 106 min | Drama, Romance

In 1815, authors Lord Byron, Mary Shelley and Percy Shelley get together for some philosophical discussions, but the situation soon deteriorates into mind games, drugs and sex.

Director: Ivan Passer | Stars: Philip Anglim, Laura Dern, Alice Krige, Eric Stoltz

Votes: 395

Mary Shelley (née Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin; 30 August 1797 – 1 February 1851) was a British novelist, short story writer, dramatist, essayist, biographer, and travel writer, best known for her Gothic novel Frankenstein: or, The Modern Prometheus (1818). She also edited and promoted the works of her husband, the Romantic poet and philosopher Percy Bysshe Shelley.

George Gordon Byron, 6th Baron Byron, later George Gordon Noel, 6th Baron Byron, FRS (22 January 1788 – 19 April 1824), commonly known simply as Lord Byron, was a British poet and a leading figure in Romanticism. Amongst Byron's best-known works are the brief poems She Walks in Beauty, When We Two Parted, and So, we'll go no more a roving, in addition to the narrative poems Childe Harold's Pilgrimage and Don Juan. He is regarded as one of the greatest British poets and remains widely read and influential.