What would be if you had to list the best Meryl Streep movies? Now, I know what you’re thinking: “It’s not that easy; maybe there are too many good movies with Meryl Streep.” But it’s not impossible! And if it were impossible, Vulture wouldn’t have done it.
She’s just your typical Jane from New Jersey. No, she isn’t from NJ or New York City, but instead from a tiny town in Connecticut called Holtsville. When Meryl Streep was 14, she got her first acting role and never looked back.
Meryl Streep is known for her outstanding acting skills, and she is considered one of the best actresses of all time.
She has won three Oscars for her roles in Kramer vs. Kramer, Sophie’s Choice, and The Iron Lady and has also been nominated 21 times for various awards.
In this post, we’ve selected ten movies where Meryl Streep has featured to present to you our favorites in the hope that you will also like them.
1. Mamma Mia! (2008)
- IMDb Ratings: 6.4/10
Starting off our list of the best Meryl Streep movies, You might have heard of this movie and wondered how it could be a Meryl Streep movie. But trust me: it is.
This 2008 comedy film stars Streep as Donna, a single mother who’s excited to be going to her daughter Sophie’s wedding in Greece.
She gets there with some friends, and they start singing and dancing around in their hotel room, but this whole vacation is just an excuse for all of them to party before the big day!
The best part about Mamma Mia! It felt like watching one of those classic musicals from back in Hollywood’s golden age, like Singin’ In The Rain or On The Town (with Gene Kelly).
It was full of energy, fun songs, terrific dance numbers, and Meryl Streep performing those dance numbers perfectly (as she always does).
If you want something lighthearted with lots of laughs and catchy tunes that’ll get stuck in your head forever after watching it once (or twice), this is one movie worth checking out.
If you haven’t already seen it multiple times like I did after I first saw this film years ago, my friend brought over some DVDs she’d rented while having sleepovers after school together.
2. Kramer vs. Kramer (1979)
- IMDb Ratings: 7.8/10
Kramer vs. Kramer is not a film you watch because of its love story, but it has a great one nonetheless. The first Meryl Streep movie I saw and one that remains among my best Meryl Streep movies of all time.
In this movie, Streep plays Greta Kramer, a hardworking mother who must deal with her husband’s decision to leave her and their son. He does so without warning or notice, leaving them both to pick up the pieces of their life together.
Greta becomes a housewife again as she struggles through this difficult time with her son Billy (Justin Henry).
During this process, She becomes an independent woman, something considered taboo during the early 70′s when the film was released. This fantastic movie is second on our list of the best Meryl Streep movies.
3. The Devil Wears Prada (2006)
- IMDb Ratings: 6.9/10
Next on our list of the best Meryl Streep movies is “The Devil wears Prada,” a film based on a novel by Lauren Weisberger of the same title.
As melodramas go, the Devil Wears Prada is a class act. It ranks in fifth place among all of Streep’s movies when accounting for Rotten Tomatoes’s adjusted score, and it made more money at the box office (almost $200 million) than any other movie she’s starred in to date.
That’s an impressive feat in and of itself, particularly considering that Streep has such a prolific career behind her.
On top of all that, she played one of her most iconic roles in this film, that of the demanding fashion magazine editor Miranda Priestly who makes her employees’ lives miserable.
Her character is difficult to like, but Streep’s performance makes her complex and exciting. She’s so good that she steals every scene; she’s too good for you not to notice her!. And we can’t forget how funny she was in certain scenes either.
4. Sophie’s Choice (1982)
- IMDb Ratings: 7.5/10
Unarguably one of the best Meryl Streep movies, based on the novel by William Styron with the same title; it tells the story of a woman who moves to Brooklyn and falls in love with a charming man named Nathan. Subsequently, she finds out that he is a Nazi war criminal.
The movie also includes flashbacks to Sophie’s life before this time, including her time in Auschwitz. We see how she has suffered tragedy after tragedy due to World War II and its aftermath.
The movie stars Meryl Streep as Sophie Lefkovitz and Kevin Kline as Nathan Landau, who takes her into his home while hiding from American authorities looking for him.
Still, Nathan isn’t just hiding there to avoid being caught by those authorities: he has made friends among them too!
5. The Hours (2002)
- IMDb Ratings: 7.5/10
Starring alongside Julianne Moore, Nicole Kidman, and Ed Harris, Meryl Streep stars as Clarissa Vaughan, a contemporary version of Virginia Woolf, in this drama about the lives of three women.
The film is based on Michael Cunningham’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name. She won the Academy Award for Best Actress for her role in this movie.
6. Out of Africa (1985)
- IMDb Ratings: 7.1/10
Without this addition, Our list of the best Meryl Streep movies will be incomplete. Based on a true story, Out of Africa stars Meryl Streep and Robert Redford as Danish author Karen Blixen and her husband, Baron Bror Blixen.
The movie is set in Kenya during the early 1900s and tells the story of how Karen’s marriage ultimately falls apart due to her desire to return to Denmark before she dies.
While this film might not be for everyone, it won 7 Oscars at the 1986 Academy Awards (including Best Picture). The film also won 2 Golden Globes for Best Actress (Meryl Streep) and Best Score (John Barry).
7. Julie & Julia (2009)
- IMDb Ratings: 7/10
Next on our list of the best Meryl Streep movies is “Julie & Julia.” Based on the book by Julie Powell, which documents her life as a struggling writer who decides to cook her way through Julia Child’s cookbook.
Amy Adams plays the title character, and Meryl Streep portrays Julia Child in this true story about a determined woman who tries to break out of her rut and make something of herself.
8. The Manchurian Candidate (2004)
- IMDb Ratings: 6.6/10
It’s an adaptation of the 1962 film The Manchurian Candidate, which starred Frank Sinatra and Lawrence Harvey.
In this version, Denzel Washington plays a soldier who must stop his mother (Meryl Streep) from using him as part of a plot to kill the President of the United States.
The Manchurian candidate received several nominations for several awards, including one for Best Picture at the Oscars and two Golden Globes.
9. Postcards from the Edge (1990)
- IMDb Ratings: 6.7/10
Postcards from the Edge is a 1990 film directed by Mike Nichols, based on the semi-autobiographical novel of the same name by Carrie Fisher.
The film stars Meryl Streep as Suzanne Vale, who wrote about her experience with drug addiction in her book. The film also stars Shirley MacLaine and Dennis Quaid as Suzanne’s mother and sister.
The film received positive reviews from critics, making it one of the best Meryl Streep movies. And it was nominated for multiple awards, including an Academy Award for Best Actress (Meryl Streep), Golden Globe Awards for Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy and Best Actress – Musical or Comedy (Meryl Streep), BAFTA Awards for Best Adapted Screenplay, Independent Spirit Awards for Best Supporting Female (Shirley MacLaine).
10. The Bridges of Madison County (1995)
- IMDb Ratings: 7.6/10
This list of the best Meryl Streep movies would be incomplete without this movie directed by Clint Eastwood, starring Clint Eastwood. This movie was based on a novel of the same name and won Meryl Streep an Oscar for the Best Actress.
It was ranked 90th in 2002 on AFI’s 100 Year’s 100 Passions list of the greatest love stories of all time.
So there you have it! We’ve put together a list of the best Meryl Streep movies. If you enjoy watching movies and you’re a fan of Meryl Streep, you’re going to love this list as it highlights what we consider to be the best Meryl Streep movies of all time.
We’re to choose ten films that span Streep’s entire career, from her first role in Julia through her more recent starring roles in Mamma Mia.
As always, thanks for reading, and happy watching! Now get out there to watch The Devil Wears Prada already!.