Smarty Pants here. March is Women's History Month, and being the film buff that I am, I thought I'd take this opportunity to list of the best movies out there that celebrate and explore the triumphs of some of the most impressive women in history. Enjoy these films and discuss with your friends over a glass of me!
When Catholic Queen Mary dies, the British Crown goes to Elizabeth, the Protestant half-sister Mary had improsoned during her reign. Once crowned, Queen Elizabeth I (Cate Blanchett) is inundated by her council's endless attempts to marry her off, restore a Catholic thrown, and criticize her romance with Lord Robert Dudley. Talk about overcoming adversity.
Iron Jawed Angels (2004)
Alice Paul (Hilary Swank) and the women of the 1918 Womens Suffrage movement fight for their right to vote and run for office in this evocative film. Sacrificing their health, marriages and already-limited freedom, these women engage in picketing, hunger-strikes, and imprisonment to make their voices heard and win the rights they deserve. If it weren't for them, the United States of America might be a very different place today.
Introducing Dorothy Dandridge (1999)
A biopic following the life of singer and actress Dorothy Dandridge (Halle Berry), who became the first African American to be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress for her performance in Carmen Jones in 1954. From lounge singer to movie star, Dorothy battles racism, parenting, love, and prescription drug addiction, all while in the spotlight.
This film starring Hilary Swank explores the life of pilot Amelia Earhart. Amelia was the first woman to pilot a plane solo across the Atlantic Ocean, winner of the Distinguished Flying Cross, and subject of myth for her disappearance over the Pacific Ocean in 1937 on a journey to circumnavigate the globe.
Calendar Girls (2003)
In the small town of Knapely, Yorkshire, England, Annie (Julie Walters) and Chris (Helen Mirren) are best friends who attend the local Women's Institude (WI). They are bored by the chapter's mundane meetings, so when Annie's husband dies of lukemia, the two friends raise money for their local hospital in an unusual way: with a nude calendar featuring the middle-aged ladies of Yorkshire. Based on a true story!
The Iron Lady (2011)
An elderly Margaret Thatcher (Meryl Streep) talks to the imagined presence of her recently deceased husband as she struggles to come to terms with his death. They discuss her successes and failures while scenes from her past, from girlhood to British prime minister, intervene.
A League of Their Own (1992)
With so many young men overseas fighting in WWII, the professional baseball industry is floundering - so sponsors create a league for women. Farm girls Dottie Hinson (Geena Davis) and Kit Keller (Lori Petty) are recruited to the team and are suddenly exposed a world they only imagined. Also starring: John Lovitz, Gary Marshall, Megan Cavanaugh, Madonna, Rosie O'Donnell, Anne Cusack, and Tom Hanks.
Erin Brockovich (2000)
Julia Roberts stars in this true story about an unemployed single mother who becomes a legal assistant, and discovers a cover-up involving the improper and dangerous disposal of toxic waste in residential areas. As she digs deeper, Erin takes lead to bring about the biggest class action lawsuit in American history.
The Life and Time of Rosie the Riveter (1980)
The Life and Times of Rosie the Riveter is a 1980 documentary film by Connie Field about the American women who went to work during World War II to do "men's jobs". In 1996, it was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registryby the Library of Congressas being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".
Gloria: In Her Own Words (2011)
GLORIA: IN HER OWN WORDS chronicles Steinem’s emergence as a driving force in the modern women’s liberation movement. Despite decades of opposition from the right, and recent personal setbacks, Gloria Steinem remains one of the most outspoken and visible symbols of the women’s movement today. The documentary blends interviews of Steinem in her Manhattan apartment, archival footage, photographs from throughout her life and clips from press interviews over the years.