The best biopic movies seem to be hard to come by these days. On the other hand, I’ve been informed that I’m too pessimistic about accepting the idea that they follow a formula that directors rarely attempt to alter.
When we enter the 2000s and 2010s, this ranking of the top 15 biopics will suffer a little. Biopics continue to be produced at a breakneck speed.
They are still highly adored in Hollywood. It’s simple to see why they appeal to filmmakers as well. However, the biographical formula is growing stale as the year’s pass.
The sabotaging of these movies by screenwriters who make puzzling, occasionally unneeded adjustments to the story’s veracity seems to be becoming more regular.
I believe that it’s time for a new list of biopic movies. This List considers that the biopic has become an increasingly popular genre. The best Biopic series of all time are listed below:
1. American Beauty (1999)
Lester Burnham, a suburbanite, recalls his final weeks of life after passing away somewhere in his 43rd year. During those weeks, he was unaware of his impending death.
He is the father of high school student Jane Burnham and the husband of real estate salesperson Carolyn Burnham.
Lester and Carolyn used to be in love, but now they just put up with each other. Jane, a typical wallflower, despises both of her parents, and the three of them go through their struggles in silence.
Jane makes an effort to avoid her parents. Carolyn, relatively new to the real estate industry, aspires to lead the successful life of Buddy Kane, the industry’s reigning monarch, to advance her career.
The top cast includes, among others, Kevin Spacey, Annette Bening, Thora Birch, Chris Cooper, Allison Janney, Amy Ryan, Parker Posey, and Stanley Tucci.
2. Forrest Gump (1994)
Forrest Gump is one of the best Biopic movies of all time. It is a man who lives his entire life without ever being able to forget anything.
He can’t remember what happened on any particular day or even where he lived. However, he knows how to play ping pong and can run like the wind.
Forrest is a kind-hearted soul who loves everyone around him. His only problem is that he doesn’t have a goal in life.
The top cast includes Tom Hanks, Robin Wright Penn, Gary Sinise, Mykelti Williamson, Robert Duvall, Shirley MacLaine, and John Travolta.
3. Million Dollar Baby (2004)
Million Dollar Baby tells the story of Christy Martin, a woman from New York City who decides to take boxing lessons to improve her self-esteem.
She ends up training under Freddie Welsh, a former boxer who is now a trainer. However, she becomes determined to win the championship belt after she wins her first fight.
Million Dollar Baby is directed by Clint Eastwood and stars Hilary Swank, Morgan Freeman, and Mickey Rourke. The top cast includes Hilary Swank, Michael Chiklis, Frank Langella, and Peter Gallagher.
4. The Social Network (2010)
Although David Fincher has produced many excellent films, The Social Network is his Citizen Kane. There are startling similarities between how the Movie depicts the growth of an ambitious person and the inevitable breakdown of their social life.
Furthermore, based on the autobiographical book The Accidental Billionaires, the plot is about the creation of Facebook.
Additionally, it shows Mark Zuckerburg’s and the company’s journey out of chronological order—again, like Citizen Kane. Rosebud, Zuckerberg’s ex-girlfriend from college, is breaking up with him, prompting Rosebud to create “FaceMash.”
By the Movie’s end, as he adds her as a friend on Facebook, he has amassed wealth and power but still lives in complete solitude, yearning for the connection he has always desired.
The Movie was directed by David Fincher and starred Jesse Eisenberg, Andrew Garfield, Justin Timberlake, Rooney Mara, and Max Minghella.
5. Behind the Candelabra (2013)
Behind the Candelabra is also one of the best biopic movies. With his final film (at the time), Steven Soderbergh could depart from the screen in a manner befitting his talents.
The writer/director once more came up with inventive techniques to convey a genuinely singular life. The somewhat eccentric Liberace has a limited public image.
Be focusing on the relationship between Scott Thorson and Liberace. Director Steven Soderbergh cannot only represent Liberace’s era but also give the man a lot more respect and complexity than he typically receives.
Furthermore, the peculiarity of Liberace’s life and profession makes it simple to lose oneself in it. Soderbergh doesn’t avoid tackling these issues.
The top cast includes, among others, Matt Damon, Michael Douglas, Jude Law, Antonio Banderas, and Simon Callow.
6. The King’s Speech (2011)
The King’s Speech is another great biopic film. It is based on the true story of the real-life king George VI, who became ill during World War II.
His stammering speech impediment made it difficult for him to speak publicly. However, when he finally overcame this problem, he became a great leader.
The Movie focuses on the early years of his reign. His wife Elizabeth, played by Helena Bonham Carter, tries to help him overcome his disability.
Interestingly, the Movie portrays the royal couple as being very much in love. This is not something you often see in other biopics. The top cast features Colin Firth, Geoffrey Rush, Helena Bonham Carter, and Guy Pearce.
7. Hotel Rwanda (2004)
Given his efforts in movies like Hotel Rwanda, it is now a glaring absence that Don Cheadle hasn’t received an Oscar.
Cheadle serves as the focal point of a broader narrative that aims to portray the Rwandan Genocide as starkly as possible as the humanitarian/hotelier Paul Rusesabagina.
The film is unafraid to depict the horrors of its narrative, but Hotel Rwanda also tells a nuanced tale of bravery.
Additionally, these are characteristics that biopics, which sometimes settle for concentrating on one or two parts of narrating a tale, can find challenging to depict.
Hotel Rwanda is almost flawless in its effort to do more and stand for more, thanks to Nick Nolte and Sophie Okonedo’s standout supporting roles.
8. Schindler’s List (1993)
Schindler’s List is one of the most popular and best biopic movies. It is about Oskar Schindler, a German industrialist who saved over 1,000 Jews from certain death at the hands of the Nazis.
The Movie won seven Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Director, Actor, Actress, Supporting Actor, Screenplay, and Original Score.
Schindler’s List is considered one of the greatest war movies ever made. It depicts the Holocaust through the eyes of a single individual.
The Movie was nominated for eight Oscars, winning five: Best Picture, Director, Adapted Screenplay, Film Editing, and Original Score.
It also won three Golden Globes: Best Motion Picture – Drama, Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role (Liam Neeson).
9. Lincoln (2012)
This Movie is about President Abraham Lincoln, who led the United States through the Civil War. Steven Spielberg directed the Movie, with Daniel Day-Lewis playing the title role.
The Movie has been praised for its historical accuracy, especially regarding the portrayal of Lincoln. Lincoln was directed by Steven Spielberg, who also wrote the screenplay. He also produced the Movie with Kathleen Kennedy, Frank Marshall, and Eric Roth.
10. GoodFellas (1997)
Next on our List of best biopic movies is GoodFellas. Goodfellas is a 1997 American crime drama film written and directed by Martin Scorsese.
The movie stars Robert DeNiro, Ray Liotta, Joe Pesci, Lorraine Bracco, Stephen Graham, and Paul Sorvino. Goodfellas follows Henry Hill, a young man who becomes involved in organized crime after meeting Tommy DeVito.
Henry eventually rises to the ranks and becomes a significant player in the mob. The top cast include, Robert DeNiro, Joe Pesci, Ray Liotta, Lorraine Bracco and Paul Sorvino.
11. The Pianist (2002)
The Pianist is a 2002 epic war drama film based upon the novel by Władysław Reymont. It is directed by Roman Polanski and stars Adrien Brody, Rachel Weisz, Ed Harris, and Emily Watson.
Furthermore, the story revolves around Polish pianist Władysława “Wladek” Szpilman, who survived the Auschwitz concentration camp during World War II.
He meets pianist Brona Berkowicz, who helps him survive and escape from the camp. The top cast includes Adrien Brody, Emily Watson, Rachel Weisz, and Ed Harris.
12. Amour (2012)
Amour is a 2012 French romantic drama film directed by Michael Haneke. Alfred (Jean-Louis Trintignant) and Anne (Emmanuelle Riva) met as children in Paris in 1922. They fall deeply in love and marry.
They lived together happily until the outbreak of World War II. When France falls to Germany, Alfred is taken prisoner and sent to Buchenwald concentration camp.
Anne visits him there but cannot bring herself to tell him that she loves another man. Additionally, she returns home to her husband, unaware he has died.
The Movie was directed by Michael Haneke and starred Jean-Louis Trintignant and Emmanuelle Riva.
13. Driving Miss Daisy (1989)
Driving Miss Daisy is also one of the best biopic movies. It is a 1989 American comedy-drama film directed by Bruce Beresford and starring Jessica Tandy, Morgan Freeman, James Earl Jones, and Vanessa Redgrave.
Based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning play by Alfred Uhry, it tells the story of a wealthy white woman, Daisy Werthan, who hires a black chauffeur named Hoke Colburn to drive her around Atlanta.
The Movie received seven Academy Award nominations, including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actress (Jessica Tandy), Best Supporting Actor (Morgan Freeman), Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Original Score, and Best Film Editing.
14. Glory (1989)
Glory is a 1989 American biographical sports drama film about the 1972 Summer Olympics held in Munich, West Germany.
Addict was directed by Edward Zwick and starred Denzel Washington, Matthew Broderick, Willem Dafoe, John Cusack, and Dan Aykroyd.
The Movie focuses on the United States Olympic basketball team’s exploits at the Munich Games.
15. Frida (2002)
It is improbable that anyone will ever be able to depict the artist Frida Kahlo’s life and work accurately. Julie Taymor, who directed the biopic starring Salma Hayek, and the rest of the cast and crew gave it their damnedest effort.
The end product is a sprawling story that gives Kahlo the respect, decency, and careful consideration for her artistic endeavors that she rightfully deserves.
Furthermore, the intensity and impact of Hayek’s performance nearly eclipse the whole picture. That makes perfect sense, but Frida deserves praise for many other traits.
However, it has an outstanding supporting cast (including Alfred Molina as Diego Rivera), emphasizes Kahlo’s unique personality and style appealingly, and avoids pandering to the audience at every turn.
The top cast includes Salma Hayek, Alfred Molina, Marisa Tomei, Peter Coyote, Danny Huston, and William Hurt.
16. Malcolm X (1992)
Malcolm X is also one of the best Biopic Movies of all time. The anger and rage that permeate this entire biographical epic about Malcolm X could only be produced by Spike Lee.
However, Malcolm X is unapologetically unrepentant in a wonderfully seductive way with one of Denzel Washington’s best performances.
In its best moments, the Movie aspires to be more than just a biography of an attractive person by attempting to depict the unique energy and mayhem of the 1960s.
It successfully expresses that on a level that hasn’t been fully understood up to this point. The top cast includes Denzel Washington, Ruby Dee, Ossie Davis, Angela Bassett, and David Oyelowo.
17. The Wolf Of Wall Street (2013)
This 2013 Martin Scorsese film is based on the memoirs of Jordan Belfort, a stockbroker from New York City who became a millionaire through his fraudulent schemes.
Scorsese’s latest film is a darkly comic tale of greed, excess, and debauchery. It features Leonardo DiCaprio as the titular character and Jonah Hill, Marg.
The following are some of the most popular movies of all time. These films have grossed over $100 million domestically or worldwide. They were released between 1990 and 2000.
The top cast includes Leonardo DiCaprio, Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, Kate Winslet, Tobey Maguire, Jude Law, and Charlize Theron, James Caan.
18. A Beautiful Mind (2001)
A Beautiful Mind tells the true story of mathematician John Forbes Nash Jr., who has paranoid schizophrenia.
Nash was a brilliant mathematician who won the Nobel Prize for economics in 1994. He was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia in 1957 when he was 26.
He spent much of his adult life in mental institutions, where he was treated with electroconvulsive therapy. However, his condition worsened until he died in 2014. The top cast includes Russell Crowe, Jennifer Connelly, Ed Harris, Paul Rudd, and Tom Hanks.
19. Raging Bull (1980)
Last on our List of best Biopic Movies is Raging Bull. Raging Bull is a 1980 American drama film directed by Martin Scorsese.
Based on the book I Am Not Your Father: My Fight Against Osteoporosis, written by Jake Eberts, stars Robert De Niro as boxer Jake LaMotta.
The film depicts La Motta’s rise and fall in boxing, including his rivalry with Sugar Ray Robinson. It also shows how his family life deteriorated after his wife left him.
The top cast consists of Robert De Niro, Joe Pesci, Cathy Moriarty, Harvey Keitel, and Frank Vincent.
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