If the goal of The Iron Lady was to get another statuette for Meryl Streep, the mission was accomplished. Streep receives a generous part which takes former British PM Margaret Thatcher from her early days in the Commons to the peak of her career and then to the sunset of her life, ruined by the Alzheimer disease and devastated by the loss of her husband. She does the best of this wonderful opportunity and the Oscar is fully deserved. She is so good that for a while many people who saw this film will have her image in mind when the name Margaret Thatcher is pronounced rather than the one of the real life character.


source http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1007029/


From any other point of view this film is a failure. Director Phyllida Lloyd is at her second feature film and the first non-musical one, and her rich experience in theater and opera was of little help here. There are two principal threads and none of them makes it to the viewer.


the Real Ms. Thatcher - source http://assassinscreed.wikia.com/wiki/Margaret_Thatcher


The first theme is about the fight of an old woman with the Alzheimer disease, the loneliness of the old age and the feeling of loss she is encountering having lost her partner of a life, a partner she most of the time neglected as she was engaging on the most thrilling career a woman could engage in the late 20th century. This could have been a very interesting movie, but in order to make it the director and script writers should have diminished the other theme, and avoid repetitions and trivial situations. They have done none of these, so the treatment of this theme is seldom moving, but seems quite disrespectful on the other hand (after all Ms. Thatcher is still alive, and fighting the disease so detailed described in the film).


(video source trailers)


The political career of the only PM elected three times in a row in the history of England in the 20th century is obviously the second theme. This one is however treated with such a respectful superficiality that it looks not even like a biopics but at some moments as a Conservative propaganda collection of clips and dramatized dialogs, with Streep instructed to declaim all possible slogans in the Little Tory Book, and the background of the events never even scratched beyond its surface.   50 years from now nobody will understand watching this film why the British Prime Minister decided to enter war with Argentina over the Falklands or why protesters were furiously surrounding her car.

The Iron Lady brought Meryl Streep a(nother) well deserved Oscar. It will find its place in the Meryl Streep retrospectives. Mission Accomplished. Nothing more.