10 Underrated Biographical Movies To Prepare You For ‘Oppenheimer’ – Deadline

While images have created enduring characters over time, some of the most graphic and beloved roles on screen have been with real people. Due to the incredibleness of life, the story of a real person can sometimes surpass the wonder of fiction.

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A favorite genre at the Oscars, many real-life stories have been brought to the big screen over the years. While movies like Schindler’s list and Gandhi gained worldwide recognition after being adapted from stories of real people, there are still great biographical films that have flown under the radar.

Bernie (2011)

by Richard Linklater The filmography is prolific and exceptional, so it’s understandable to look beyond a few of his less traditional films. However, doing this with Bernie would be a mistake. Featuring Jack Black in a pleasingly jarring performance, Bernie follows a small-town undertaker who befriends a wealthy widow, but their relationship has fatal consequences.

From a 1998 article in Texas Monthly magazine, Linklater and co-author Skip Hollandsworth employ an unparalleled understanding of the story’s characters, their specific tone and regionalism. Presented in part in a mockumentary style, Bernie is a dark, well-acted film about a fascinating character and the town he inhabits.

‘Star 80’ (1983)

Although he has only made five feature films, each film by the famous theater director Bob Fosse occupies a unique place in the history of cinema. This is particularly the case with his latest film, Star 80released 4 years before his death in 1987. Headlining Mariel Hemingway and Eric Robert in some of the best work of their careers, Star 80 tells the story of Playboy model Dorothy Stratten and her volatile relationship with her controlling and manipulative boyfriend.

Although he enjoyed mainstream success, including several Oscar nominations for his previous film And all that, Star 80 saw Fosse regress commercially with the film only grossing half of its $12 million budget. Despite this, Fosse continues to get the best out of its cast in this gripping and seductive crime drama.

‘Reversal of Fortune’ (1990)

Intelligent and absorbing, The reverse of fortune is one of the best films of the 1990s. Despite being nominated for multiple Oscars, the film failed to achieve box office success, grossing only $15 million at the box office. . Realized by Barbet Schröderthe film is about socialite Claus Von Bulow who hires a law professor to help him overturn his attempted murder convictions against his comatose wife.

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The film is terribly interpreted as Ron Silver’s fiery performance as a lawyer Alan Dershowitz compensates perfectly by Jeremy Irons icy portrait of Von Bulow, a role that won him the Oscar for best actor. Adapted from the novel by Dershowitz himself, the film is engrossing from start to finish and operates as a courtroom drama, mystery, and watch on the wealthy.

“American Splendor” (2003)

American Splendor was written and directed by documentary filmmakers Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcinithe film is about cartoonist Harvey Pekar, his relationship with his partner, and his friendship with fellow cartoonist Robert Crumb.

Adapted from the cartoons of the same name by Pekar, the film mixes narration, documentary and animation to illustrate the portrait of Pekar and his girlfriend Joyce Brabner. Paul Giamatti stars as Pekar in one of his first leading roles, which will inspire many more to come. Despite being nominated for Best Adapted Screenplay at the Oscars, the film earned less than $9 million at the box office, a non-indication of the film’s humor, care, and overall quality.

“Love and Mercy” (2014)

Image via Road Attractions

Titled after Brian Wilson’s 1988 song of the same name, love and mercy is a film worthy of the genius of which it speaks. Jumping between the 1960s and 80s, the film tells the story of Beach Boys frontman Brian Wilson, his relationships and his battles with mental health. Directed by the film producer Bill Pohladthe film was a box office success and received positive reviews from critics.

Paul Dano and John Cusack are surprisingly perfect as the younger and older version of Wilson, respectively. The film, like Wilson’s music, can be very tender. However, it’s the impressive score and shocking displays of evil that propel love and mercy to become one of the best musical biopics of the decade.

“Shattered Glass” (2003)

hayden christensen picture of broken glass
Image via Lions Gate Films

Ask any journalism student and they’ll know the name Stephen Glass. According to the Vanity Fair article of the same name, Broken glass follows Glass, a young New Republic journalist who lands in deep water following allegations that he fabricated news stories to gain exposure.

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Glass is represented in the film by Hayden Christensen in one of the finest performances of his career. In front of him is Pierre Sarsgaard as editor Chuck Lane, a role he plays with astonishing complexity and moral interiority. Realized by Billy Ray in his directorial debut, the film is a shrewd analysis of Glass and the idea of ​​journalistic integrity writ large.

“Charlie Wilson’s War” (2007)

Charlie Wilson’s War is not commercially underrated as it grossed over $100 million at the box office. It’s also not underrated when it comes to talent, offering the best of the best, from writer to director to actors. It is understated simply because it is mistakenly placed at the bottom of the writer Aaron Sorkin and director by Mike Nichols filmographies.

Featuring tom hank, julia robertand Philip Seymour Hoffman, the film is about Congressman Charlie Wilson, played by Hanks, and his involvement in the Soviet-Afghan War. The film is littered with Sorkin’s typically quick and clever dialogue, which is bolstered by Nichols’ expert directing. Funny, informative and well-acted, Charlie Wilson’s War is definitely a beacon for everyone involved.

‘Foxcatcher’ (2014)

foxcatcher is the culmination of any director Bennett Miller had worked up to this point. His first narrative film, Hoodwas a murder film while his second narrative film, silver ball, was a sports movie. His third and most recent narrative film was a murder and sports film titled foxcatcher about philanthropist Jon Du Pont and his dangerous relationship with two Olympic wrestlers.

Although appearing on multiple Critics’ Year-End Top 10 lists and nominated for multiple Oscars, foxcatcher was a financial bomb, grossing $5 million under budget. Steve Carell plays Du Pont in a brilliant dramatic turn that matches his comedic prowess. The film smolders with an inscrutable tone, and while it may take a while to unfold when it does, it’s unforgettable.

“Auto Focus” (2002)

Paul Schrader is the reigning expert on sleazy men and their sexual pathology in today’s movies. Here in Auto focus, he is in great shape in one of his best films. Directed by Schrader but written by Michel Gerbosithe film is about TV star Bob Hope who, while projecting a family man image, secretly masks a crippling sex addiction.

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Greg Kinner is very endearing in the charming but sordid Hope while Willem Dafoe is masterful like his sleazy friend John Carpenter. The style of the film is impeccable, from the clothes to the sets. The film also employs more fun and levity than most Schrader releases, despite the subject matter. Although it made less than $3 million, it’s certainly one of Schrader’s most enjoyable films to date.

“The Man on the Moon” (1999)

Named after the REM song, Man on the Moon is the love letter to the brilliant, elusive and beloved “man of song and dance” Andy Kaufman. Featuring jim carrey, the film is a biographical account of the life of legendary comedian Andy Kaufman. After a series of commercial successes, Man on the Moon found Carrey in a flop, bringing in $47 million against his budget of $82 million.

The film is certainly flawed, including the director’s overly conventional mise en scene. Foreman of Milos. However, Carrey’s performance is magical at times, leading to a truly emotional climax. Her critically acclaimed performance was eventually the subject of a Chris Smith documentary titled Jim and Andy: The Great Beyond. Without being irreproachable, Man on the Moon is ultimately almost worthy of Kaufman and his life.

NEXT: 10 Best Biographical Movies Of The 21st Century (So Far)

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10 Underrated Biographical Movies To Prepare You For ‘Oppenheimer’ – Deadline