Need more proof as to Meryl Streep‘s status as our finest working film actress?
Look no further than her riviting and flawless performance as British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.
In THE IRON LADY we flash back from her now dementia impaired living status to a career that had made her the most famous and influential woman of the 20th Century. An 11 year long political reign of running the British government that began in 1979 and ended in 1990.
And even further back to her humble origins as the daughter of a local grocer.
But there’s something quite unusual here. The film itself is good. Yet Meryl Streep’s performance and portrayal of Thatcher far exceeds it.
When she becomes the nation’s tough commander leading England into the Falklands War, there’s no doubt in your mind that Streep is Margaret Thatcher.
Matter of fact, I accepted Streep as the character she portrays from the first scenes—something that normally takes me at least 10 to 15 minutes into a film depicting a still living major international personality.
THE IRON LADY is a motion picture of contrasting images of Britain’s first ever female prime minister, who was also a mother. And in many ways it could be defined as an intimate personal portrait as she now deals almost daily with her husband Denis Thatcher—who had actually died 8 years earlier. He’s wonderfully portrayed by Jim Broadbent.
The bottom line: There may be a bit too much flashing back and forth for my taste, but THE IRON LADY is definitely worth seeing by the serious moviegoer.
Sometimes I approach my personal rating of a movie from two perspectives; as the total film experience and from the standpoint of a specific leading performance.
That’s the case with THE IRON LADY.
3-1/2 OUT OF 5 fingers for the film, but 5 fingers in response to Ms. Streep’s Oscar worthy performance.
She WILL be nominated for the top prize on January 24th. Count on it.
JACK GOES TO THE MOVIES Friday mornings at 6:40 a.m. on NewsRadio KMBZ AM & FM and at 8:20 a.m. on 1660 RADIO BACH. Also anytime on Time-Warner Cable’s K.C. ON DEMAND, Channel 411.