Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Journal Entry #7: My Top Five Biopics

1.Kinsey (Bill Condon, USA 2004)
Alfred Kinsey is the subject of this neoclassical scientific biopic. His research interest in human sexuality upended Victorian sexual attitudes, and set the stage for the sexual revolution of the 1960’s.

2.The Notorious Bettie Page (Mary Harron, USA, 2005)
On the one hand, the subject of this film is Bettie Page, a sex trade worker in the bondage film industry of the 1950’s. On the other hand, the subject of this film is how a woman can both make a living as a sex trade worker and also be true to her private inner self. This film in a good companion piece to the picture of national sexual mores portrayed in the Kinsey biopic.

3.An Angel at My Table (Jane Campion, Australia, 1990)
Janet Frame’s life challenges all of the classical biopic conventions; it is the story of her life from birth to literary success and beyond. The themes of a woman’s self, family, class and madness are riveting.

4.Erin Brokovich (Steven Soderbergh, USA, 2000)
Erin Brokovich is a neoclassical biopic subject, and the story of an attractive woman whose economic problems catapulted her into successfully confronting both the legal system and corporate greed.

5.Jeanne d’Arc (Carl Theodor Dryer, Denmark, 1928)
Devotees of silent film will love the close-ups in this classical biography of a rebellious French woman accused of religious heresy.


  1. Talk to Me (2007)

    Just watched it last night. Biopic about Petey Greene, a radio figure in the 60s and 70s. Really enjoyed it! It captures the racial politics (and gender politics) of the 60-70s, and a lovely relationship between the two main male leads that raises great questions about community activism, and forms of supporting eachother. Fun!

  2. Strong picks. Perhaps you will choose to write on 'Jeanne d'Arc' for your final..?