I wondered why CGV in Yongsan didn't carry The Iron Lady this week when it's supposed to be the best time to show it. It's the week before the Oscars!
That's why I had to hurry down to Landcinema instead. It's far, but I had no choice. I just had to watch The Iron Lady and learn a few years of British history. Margaret Thatcher was always on the news when I was still at school. Now that I'm done with school, she's no longer in the news but in the movies!
Sitting there at the spacious Landcinema Hall #8 (with my popcorn, Coke and about 40 moviegoers...only!), the film reminded me of events discussed in the classroom and on television. From the IRA bombings to the miners' strikes that almost crippled the British economy and to the war at the Falklands, the whole movie was a lecture on the British history and economy as well as the most brilliant performance of an actor in years. Not even Viola Davis (another favorite to win the best actress at the 2012 Oscars) can match what I think is a performance people will talk about until the 2013 Oscars.
We are all used to Meryl Streep's roles where she adopts an accent, perfect a language and immediately disappears into her character. And sometimes, her unfortunate co-stars would just pale at her brilliance, making us forget the rest of the cast (and they would just say it was an honor working with her).
As the Iron Lady, Meryl Streep disappears behind the coiffed hair, the pouting lips, the twin pearl necklaces, the overbite and the screeching voice. Gosh, she was even able to pin down the swaying of Thatcher's head! And as the retired Thatcher, Streep made me sympathize with the elderly as she struggled on the screen with old age and dementia. Watch how she walks like an old lady, with those small easy steps, drooping back and wandering eyes.
The movie narrates how Margaret, as a young lady from Grantham, made her way through British politics until she finally became the prime minister in 1979 by bringing the audience back in time through flashbacks showing the highlights in Thatcher's life and political career.
I especially enjoyed those memorable quotes from Thatcher which showed off her wit and toughness as a woman and as a leader. "It's time to put the 'great' back into Great Britain.", she said.
The movie is also quite a lesson on leadership and the acceptance of the female gender as an equal (the male- dominated Korean society could also learn a thing or two from the movie).
The British are lucky Margaret Thatcher wanted her life to mean something. She became their prime minister. I, too, am lucky, as her life is now a must-see movie!
Although I haven't seen the other Oscar best actress nominees' performances, I wouldn't be surprised if Meryl Streep wins her third Oscar. With her 17 nominations, it seems that it's already a habit for her to produce a performance year after year with which others have to try to measure their own performances.
Good luck, Meryl! And if Margaret Thatcher were an Academy member, she'd definitely vote for you, too.