Thursday Movie Picks: Period Drama

Happy Thursday, everyone! Brightburn is finally out in the UK today so I’m hoping to catch that tonight. I’m not setting my expectations too high, but I’m still looking forward to it. Anyway, Thursday also means Thursday Movie Picks, hosted by Wandering Through the Shelves. I had to do a quick Google search to define this week’s topic of Period Drama, as I’ve always said I hated the genre without really knowing what it is.

To my joy, Google defined it as “a work set in a past time period, usually used in the context of film and television”. Well blow me down, it’s a much broader term than I thought it was! Thanks to that revelation, I’m bringing a theme within the theme this week, as my 3 Period Drama picks all star Emma Stone!

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The Favourite (2018)

This, to me, is my dictionary definition of Period Drama. Women in huge, stuffy dresses and men going off to war. What convinced me to see The Favourite though was the cast, obviously including Emma Stone, and the fact that it’s directed by Yorgos Lanthimos, known for creating all things weird and wonderful. Olivia Colman won an Oscar for her performance in this, and she was so deserving of it! I highly recommended this one if you haven’t seen it already.

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The Help (2011)

It’s been years since I watched The Help, but writing this has reminded me how much I want to see it again. Emma Stone plays a writer called Skeeter who decided to interview the black women who look after wealthy families. Again, the cast here is stunning and it’s a shocking look into history. The Help is worth a watch if nothing more than to see Octavia Spencer deliver arguably her most famous line ever, “Eat my s**t”.

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Magic in the Moonlight (2014)

I only watched this one recently, but once I realised my first two picks shared Emma Stone in common I just had to see if I could make it a hat trick, and huzzah! Here we go. I’ve since learned that Woody Allen movies are an acquired taste, so this won’t be everyone’s cup of tea, but I quite liked it. It had just the right amount of humour, romance, and mystery to satisfy me.

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32 thoughts on “Thursday Movie Picks: Period Drama

  1. I’ve seen your first two, but not that last one. The Help is solid, and that cast is marvelous. Not a big fan of The Favorite. The acting was great. I just didn’t like any of the characters in the movie. I don’t always require that, but in this case, not having anyone to root for proved problematic.

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    • I totally get that. If you’ve got noone to cheer for it’s hard to enjoy a movie. I felt the same way with Wild Rose – everyone seemed to love it but I couldn’t stand the main character and it just made the movie a bit sour.

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  2. Great first pick! Totally agree with you on The Favourite. Its perhaps my favourite of Yorgos’ stuff, tho I must rewatch Dogtooth and Sacred Deer. I haven’t seen those other two, probably because its not a genre I really seek out known? Plus, the best thing I liked about The Favourite was that it made fun of the genre itself, the men betting on duck racing was hysterical !Though was a very funny one recently with Bekinsale in it. Forget the name, it was an Agatha Christie one I think. It had a very witty script, I must look it up

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    • Oooh if you remember what that movie is, let me know! I had a quick look on IMDB but nothing jumped out at me.
      Sacred Deer has a very creepy vibe but it’s still a great movie. I haven’t seen Dogtooth yet but it’s on my list!

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      • tbh I can’t actually remember Dogtooth, maybe I haven’t seen it!

        Also, I believe the film I was thinking of was ‘Love and Friendship’. Very witty dialogue and a plot that is akin to a maze of royal relationships. While not as bizarre as The Favourite obviously, it is a great film.

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  3. We match on The Favourite! I really liked The Help when i first came out but I feel quite differently about it now. I still think the actors were great though. I never bothered with the last pick because I don’t like Woody Allen movies.

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  4. I have mixed feelings on The Help as I don’t think it’s that great of a film though I did enjoy the performances of Viola Davis, Octavia Spencer, and Jessica Chastain. The Favourite is an awesome film as I hope to see it again. Magic in the Moonlight I actually liked as I think it’s one of Woody’s finer films but not among his greats. Plus, I think Emma Stone excels in working with Woody.

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      • There’s some bad Woody Allen films like Curse of the Jade Scorpion and Anything Else (my all-time least favorite film of his) but he’s done so many as they all have something interesting to say. Just don’t do a full-on summer marathon of his work. I almost died mentally with that project.

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  5. Love a theme within the theme! I wish I could say I loved The Favourite unabashedly but while I thought all the performances strong, Rachel Weisz was the best in my opinion, but the overall film was messy.

    The Help had some issues but it was still a pleasant watch with a flock of terrific work.

    As Woody films go I’d put Magic in the Moonlight firmly in the middle of the pack but like all his films it has an amazing cast.

    Love period films so getting down to three was a bit of a challenge. I decided to go with three adaptations of classic literature to ease the way.

    A Room with a View (1985)-In the early years of the 20th century English lass Lucy Honeychurch (Helena Bonham-Carter) is making a tour of Italy with her spinster cousin Charlotte (Maggie Smith). At a pensione in Florence, the pair become acquainted with the expansive Mr. Emerson (Denholm Elliott) and his free-spirited son George (Julian Sands). When Charlotte intuits that Lucy is too intrigued by George they depart back to England where Lucy ponders settling down with the wealthy, staid Cecil Vyse (Daniel Day-Lewis). Unexpectedly George reappears in her life and Lucy must decide between a sensible marriage with Cecil or the riskier true love of George. Lush, brilliantly acted comic drama from Merchant/Ivory based on an E.M. Forster novel.

    Maurice (1987)-Another Merchant/Ivory adaptation of an E.M. Forster novel but one that was only able to be published posthumously because of the controversial subject matter. In 1909, Maurice Hall (James Wilby) enters Cambridge, where he befriends wealthy Clive Durham (a very young Hugh Grant). Clive confesses he is sexually attracted to Maurice, who realizes he is a homosexual when he begins to return Clive’s feelings. The two embark on an intense but chaste affair to avoid tarnishing Clive’s reputation, but eventually the relationship ends, and Clive marries Anne (Phoebe Nicholls). While visiting Clive, Maurice is drawn toward his friend’s servant, Alec Scudder (Rupert Graves) and a more meaningful relationship looms for the two. Meticulously made with incisive work by the three leading men.

    Mansfield Park (1999)-In 1808 poor relation Fanny Price (Frances O’Connor) comes to live with wealthy uncle Sir Thomas (Harold Pinter), his haughty wife Lady Bertram (Lindsay Duncan) and their four children, at their country mansion-Mansfield Park-where she’ll be brought up for a proper introduction to society. Indifferently treated by her relatives, except for her cousin Edmund (Jonny Lee Miller) Fanny’s life is thrown into disarray with the arrival of worldly Mary Crawford (Embeth Davidtz) with whom Edmund becomes smitten and her brother Henry (Alessandro Nivola). Cunning, duplicitous and sly they cause endless complications for the entire household until a fateful event comes to pass. Solid adaptation of one of Jane Austen’s lesser known works.

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    • I need to see more of Woody Allen’s work. I haven’t found a movie of his I’ve truly loved yet, but I’ve enjoyed every one I’ve seen so far. I haven’t seen any of your picks but Mansfield Park sounds like something I would definitely enjoy!

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  6. Do you know, I don’t remember if I saw The Favourite..yikes! I really like The Help and it’s based on a true story set in the 1950’s so I think it’s quite accurate with how these poor ladies were being treated so I love what Octavia Spencer’s character did. I won’t look a chocolate pie the same way. I haven’t seen the 3rd one

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  7. Cool choices, I love The Favorite, too. I would also add Pride and Prejudice, the Keira Knightley version, I will always love that movie.
    Also, have you heard of Dangerous Beauty, with Rufus Sewell? It’s a Venetian love story, with courtesans. All-time favorite!

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  8. Great picks! Even though she’s played so many different roles, I always feel like Emma is still so underrated. I haven’t seen Magic in the Moonlight in a long time, but she was so charming from what I remember. Love the other two movies too.

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