When you’re creating a film about the career of one of Britains most controversial Prime Ministers there are a few choices you need to make to be sure you get right.
First of all you need a good director. Yet we have Phyllida Lloyd taking the tough job of putting the story of Margaret Thatchers time in office onto the big screen. Having only directed two other titles before, one tv movie in 2000 and then in 2008 the ever popular Mama Mia, it was a brave choice. However Lloyd has clearly done her research and pulls it off quite superbly. The second and probably most important choice to make is that of the actress. With such a powerful role it was vital that the right actress got the job. And Meryl Streep just steals every scene.
Starting off in modern day London The Iron Lady flicks back and forth throughout the film chronicling the main points of Thatchers life from a young lady to Prime Minister whilst an elderly Thatcher potters about the house battling with her dementia as she begins to clear away her late husbands belongings. Streep gives an Oscar worthy performance as Lady Thatcher and it wouldn’t be surprising to see her bag all the awards this year.
However, one thing that won’t appeal to many is the humanisation of Thatcher. With so many criticisms of her time in office the film tends to lean on the more positive aspects of her career with her work on the Falkland Islands being one of the main storylines. However it does still look on her least successful times yet still manages to create a feeling of sorrowness and affection for her.
Although the majority of reviews have been looking at Meryl Streeps performance, which admittedly is perhaps one of if not the greatest performance in her career to date, it is also worth noting Alexandra Roach as Young Margaret Thatcher. With all the attention on Streep it seems she is getting ignored when her work was equally as powerful.
With a last shot which will tug at your heartstrings this is not to be looked at as a glorification on Thatcher but rather as a glorification on her work. The struggles she went through in her career are shown with a sense of pride towards Britain and it is clear that no matter what your political views it will be hard to leave this film without feeling some sort of sorrow for Thatcher.