10 Best Biographical Movies of All Time, According to IMDb

From 'Malcolm X' to 'Braveheart', these figures have certainly left us with quite an impression.

It's in our nature to show interest in prominent figures who have shaped the world we live in today. Whether those people are world leaders, musical prodigies, boxers, or activists, they have influenced and shaped our world in some way, shape, or form.

RELATED: 10 Best Biopic Movies of the 21st Century (So Far)

Over the years, filmmakers have taken a particular interest in retelling the stories of widely-known public figures to those who might not have known about their incredible impact and the stories that lie behind these legends or simply as a tribute to honor them.

‘Amadeus’ (1984) — 8.4/10

Amadeus copy

Released in 1984, Amadeus is a biographical film loosely based on the life of the Austrian musical prodigy , Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart . The film focuses on the personal struggles Mozart ( Tom Hulce ) faced in alcoholism, and his marriage, while simultaneously dealing with an envious rival, Antonio Salieri ( F. Murray Abraham ), who wants to destroy him at all costs.

Though there were many dramatized and fictionalized aspects of the film, the rivalry between Mozart and Salieri is loosely based on rumors dating back to the 1770s . Throughout the years, however, many published works suggest that historians have not been able to find any evidence of any signs of rivalry. The film was nominated for eleven Academy Awards, of which it won eight, including the highly regarded Best Picture. It also won an additional 32 awards from other associations.

‘Gandhi’ (1982) — 8.1/10


Gandhi is a biographical film based on the events that occurred in the life of the adored Indian leader, Mohandas Gandhi (more commonly known as Mahatma Gandhi). After spending most of his life experiencing India under British rule, Gandhi ( Ben Kingsley ) tries to stand up for his country. Owing to his extensive accomplishments for India and the world, it's no wonder the film has a longer than average running time of 191 minutes (3 hours and 11 minutes).

His non-violent approach through civil disobedience and efforts against the British eventually led to India’s long-awaited independence and earned him an international reputation as one of the most beloved world leaders today. The film was nominated for numerous awards and won many, including eight wins from the Academy Awards.

‘Lawrence of Arabia’ (1962) — 8.3/10


Lawrence of Arabia tells the story of a British Lieutenant T. E. Lawrence ( Peter O’Toole ), who, with extensive knowledge of Bedouin tribes (nomadic Arab tribes), is sent to Arabia to serve as the link between the Arabs and the British in their battle against the Turks. Against the order of his superior officer, Lawrence, along with Sherif Ali ( Omar Sharif ), commences on a long desert journey with the plan of attacking a Turkish port.

With a running time of nearly four hours (3 hours 42 minutes to be exact), most of the general audience would likely not want to commit to watching the film, but the film's commercial success has that proven wrong. Renowned film critic Roger Ebert noted that despite the lengthy running time, Lawrence of Arabia “is not dense with plot details. It is a spare movie in clean, uncluttered lines, and there is never a moment when we doubt the logistical details of the various campaigns.” The film won many accolades, including seven Academy Awards, five Golden Globe Awards, three British Academy Film Awards, and more.

RELATED: Elvis: 6 Best Music Biopics To Watch After Baz Luhrmann’s New Film

‘Schindler’s List’ (1993) — 9.0/10

Liam Neeson as Oscar Schindler in Schindler's List

Steven Spielberg ’s epic historical drama Schindler’s List is set in the Polish city of Kraków during World War II. The film is based on the heroic acts of a German industrialist, Oskar Schindler ( Liam Neeson ), and his vigorous attempts to save more than a thousand Polish-Jewish refugees from the Holocaust. When he sees how many refugees are ruthlessly killed by the heartless SS Amon Göth ( Ralph Fiennes ) in Kraków, Schindler begins to employ the Polish-Jewish refugees to work in his factories.

In 2018, The Los Angeles Times published an article titled “Why ‘Schindler’s List’ remains brilliant and troubling 25 years after its release”, noting that despite its brilliance, some were concerned about “whether it’s morally defensible to dramatize unspeakable horror and trauma via the language of mass entertainment.” Many stories, however, are asked to be told in a dramatized way movies are a more approachable and exciting medium for the general population to learn about history.

‘Malcolm X’ (1992) — 7.7/10

Malcolm X staring at the camera surrounded by Black men in Malcolm X.

Spike Lee ’s self-titled biographical film, Malcolm X , is a tribute to the African-American activist Malcolm X (or Malcolm Little). The film explores X’s ( Denzel Washington ) whole life , from growing up in a poor household in rural Michigan to being arrested for performing robberies alongside his friend Shorty (Spike Lee) and a woman named Peg ( Debi Mazar ). While imprisoned, he meets another convict Baines ( Albert Hall ), who becomes a mentor to him and eventually converts him to Islam and consequentially as a member of the religious and political organization, the Nation of Islam.

Malcolm becomes highly invested in the group and idolizes its lifestyle teachings, such as resenting White people for mistreating his race. After being paroled from prison, Malcolm begins preaching and, years later, becomes the spokesperson of the Nation of Islam. However, after speaking out controversial statements and finding out that the group leader Elijah Muhammad ( Al Freeman Jr. ) is somewhat a hypocrite and has numerous children out of wedlock, he announces his loss of faith in Islam. Malcolm becomes the founder of the Organization of Afro-American Unity, which is an organization that focuses on tolerance instead of racial separation.

‘Raging Bull’ (1980) — 8.2/10

Robert De Niro punching a guy in a boxing ring in Raging Bull

The Hollywood biographical classic Raging Bull follows the story of an Italian-American middleweight boxer, Jake LaMotta ( Robert De Niro ). LaMotta's struggles were reflected in his career as a middleweight boxer. At age nineteen in 1941, he fell in love with a fifteen-year-old girl named Vickie ( Cathy Moriarty ), whom he married four years later in 1945.

LaMotta was always worried that Vickie was sleeping with other men, and this anxiety sent him into a downward spiral because that was the start of his uncontrollable rage. Ultimately, his life crumbles, leaving him with nothing but despair. Raging Bull has often been described as one of director Martin Scorsese ’s best directorial works , and the same goes for Robert DeNiro — one of his best performances as an actor.

RELATED: 10 Best Lookalike Actors In Biopics

‘The King’s Speech’ (2010) — 8.0/10

The King's Speech

The King’s Speech is a historical drama film about Prince Albert and his journey to becoming King George VI ( Colin Firth ), who wanted to improve his speech impediment, a stammer. His wife, Queen Elizabeth I ( Helena Bonham Carter ), resorts to an Australian speech and language therapist, Lionel Logue ( Geoffrey Rush ), who she believed was the best person to help her husband.

Throughout the process, many doubted whether anyone would take his throne seriously, but with persistence and trust from the future King and Logue, they defied all odds. The future King finally gave his first radio wartime broadcast speech flawlessly. A first-class script, followed by the strong performances by Firth and Rush, led The King’s Speech to win 70 out of a staggering 185 nominations, including four Academy Awards, seven BAFTAs, and a Golden Globe Award.

‘GoodFellas’ (1990) — 8.7/10


GoodFellas follows the story of a mob associate named Henry Hill ( Ray Liotta ), who, having grown up in an environment amongst the mobs, becomes one himself. He begins working for a member of the Mafia, Paul Cicero ( Paul Sorvino ), along with his associates, Jimmy “the Gent” Conway ( Robert DeNiro ) and Tommy DeVito ( Joe Pesci ). Hill’s upbringing and those around him perhaps blur his moral values, and despite being a man who enjoys his money and the luxuries that come with it, he chooses to ignore the affliction he has caused others.

His morality worsens after struggling with drug addiction, and his carelessness causes him to lose everything he ever knew and had; money, luxury, self-respect, identity, and family. Master filmmaker Martin Scorsese’s GoodFellas has stood the test of time and earned the reputation of being one of the best gangster films ever made.

‘Braveheart’ (1995) — 8.4/10

A group of warriors preparing for battle

The 1995 biographical film, Braveheart , is based on the history behind the late 13th-century Scottish warrior Sir William Wallace ( Mel Gibson ), who led his fellow Scots in the First War of Scottish Independence against England’s King Edward I ( Patrick McGoohan ). Wallace’s motivation started from a young age when King Edward I conquered Scotland and treated the Scottish disrespectfully. The English King later also executed Wallace's newly-married wife, Murron MacClannough ( Catherine McCormack ), after threatening to expose his soldiers who raped her.

Wallace’s long-pursued battle for Scottish independence led him to become the historic legend he is today. Braveheart went on to win many prestigious awards, including four Academy Awards and a Golden Globe Award.

RELATED: 10 Best Award-Winning Historical Movies of All Time (in Chronological Order)

‘Patton’ (1970) — 7.9/10


Patton focuses on the life of the controversial American General, George S. Patton ( George C. Scott ). The film explores his accomplishments, starting from his first glory in the Battle of El Guettar in Tunisia and subsequently gaining the respect of the army officials and generals. It was his outspokenness and the controversial statements he made, however, which determined the consequential end to his career. He was removed from command for criticizing the US post-war military strategy and further comparing American politics to Nazism.

The epic historical drama became a cinema classic and was selected for preservation in the National Film Registry in the United States and the Academy Film Archive. Patton was nominated for ten Academy Awards, of which it won an impressive seven, and many more awards from other respected accolade associations.

KEEP READING: 7 Critically-Acclaimed Movies That People Might Not Realize Are Autobiographical

Actor Peter O'Toole stars as T. E. Lawrence in the 1962 biopic 'Lawrence of Arabia.'

100 best biopics of all time

The grand sweep of history is perhaps more easily told through a narrower lens, which is one reason why biopics (biographical pictures)—which can tell the story of a movement, era, or idea through one individual's life—have become so popular in recent years. Filmmakers have increasingly preferred to work in the genre over the past several decades, finding that the unique challenges in condensing a life can embolden creativity and experimentation, resulting in extraordinary movies. Take "Persepolis," for example: The 2007 film explores the Iranian revolution through the life of an ordinary teenage girl via cartoons, weaving snapshots of an ordinary lift in the midst of social upheaval to make one of the most impactful and influential films of the decade.

While the genre has turned out some truly excellent films, not all biopics are created equal. The biggest criticism leveled against them is that they often blend fiction with fact in an irresponsible or misleading manner. J.R.R. Tolkien's estate essentially disowned the 2019 film "Tolkien," feeling the author's character and related facts were misrepresented. Another frequent complaint is that the movies trot out only the best-known facts about an individual's life, failing to offer anything new or revelatory, as with the Grace Kelly biopic "Grace of Monaco." So, which movies in this high-risk, high-reward genre are worth a watch?

Stacker compiled data on biopics to come up with a Stacker score—a weighted index split evenly between IMDb and Metacritic scores. To qualify, the film had to be listed as "biography" on IMDb and have a Metascore. Ties were broken by Metascore, and further ties were broken by IMDb user rating. Every film on the list has been considered within the context of the history and development of the genre.

Whether it's a gangster epic like "Goodfellas," a royal family drama like "The Queen," or one of the many chronicles of the lives of artists and musicians like "Endless Poetry" or "Amadeus," biopics offer something for everyone. Click through to discover the best cinematic portraits of extraordinary lives.

#100. Donnie Brasco (1997)

- Director: Mike Newell - Stacker score: 83.6 - Metascore: 76 - IMDb user rating: 7.7 - Runtime: 127 minutes

Undercover FBI agent Donnie Brasco (real name Joseph D. Pistone) infiltrates the legendary Bonanno crime family in 1970s New York City in this true crime drama. Starring Al Pacino and Johnny Depp, the film was based on Pistone's book , "Donnie Brasco: My Undercover Life in the Mafia." It's believed that Pistone's long career as an undercover agent generated over 200 indictments and 100 convictions of Mafia members.

#99. The Last Emperor (1987)

- Director: Bernardo Bertolucci - Stacker score: 83.6 - Metascore: 76 - IMDb user rating: 7.7 - Runtime: 163 minutes

Bernardo Bertolucci's " The Last Emperor " follows the life of Pu Yi, who took the throne when he was 3 years old and abdicated when he was 7. The film, shot entirely on location in China and its ancient Forbidden City palace complex, follows a country's move from feudalism through revolution to a peaceful republic, all through the lens of one man's life.

#98. Philomena (2013)

- Director: Stephen Frears - Stacker score: 83.6 - Metascore: 77 - IMDb user rating: 7.6 - Runtime: 98 minutes

Philomena Lee (Judi Dench) spends 50 years searching for her forcibly adopted son with the help of a journalist, Martin Sixsmith (Steve Coogan). The film won four Oscar nominations and took home several trophies at the 2013 Venice Film Festival. While the film is certainly a tearjerker , it is balanced both by comedic moments and the real Ms. Lee's inspirational fortitude in the face of so much loss and grief.

#97. Lorenzo's Oil (1992)

- Director: George Miller - Stacker score: 83.6 - Metascore: 80 - IMDb user rating: 7.3 - Runtime: 129 minutes

In the 1980s, Augusto and Michaela Odone experience every parent's worst nightmare when their son Lorenzo is diagnosed with an incurable nerve disease that will eventually paralyze and kill him. Failing to receive the help they needed from doctors, the Odones begin a desperate search for a cure themselves, eventually stumbling upon an oil they believe could reverse the most devastating effects of their son's illness. Nick Nolte and Susan Sarandon star in this film about one couple's desperate struggle to save their family.

#96. A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood (2019)

- Director: Marielle Heller - Stacker score: 83.6 - Metascore: 80 - IMDb user rating: 7.3 - Runtime: 109 minutes

Tom Hanks stars as one of TV's most beloved personalities, Fred Rogers, in this 2019 biopic. Based on a 1998 Esquire article, the film doesn't delve into Roger's life story but rather focuses on the friendship between Rogers and the troubled journalist Tom Junod (renamed Lloyd Vogel in the film). The real-life Mrs. Joanne Rogers makes a brief cameo in the film, and it's a quote from her that reminds viewers that her late husband wasn't a saint, just an ordinary man who tried very, very hard to be better and kind.

#95. A Beautiful Mind (2001)

- Director: Ron Howard - Stacker score: 84.2 - Metascore: 72 - IMDb user rating: 8.2 - Runtime: 135 minutes

John Nash Jr., a Nobel Prize winner, was one of the greatest mathematicians the world has ever seen. He also struggled with schizophrenia. " A Beautiful Mind ," based on an unauthorized biography of the same name written by acclaimed journalist Sylvia Nasar, tells Nash's incredible, inspirational life story. Directed by Ron Howard and starring Russell Crowe, the movie won four Academy Awards including Best Picture and grossed over $313 million at the box office.

#94. Into the Wild (2007)

- Director: Sean Penn - Stacker score: 84.2 - Metascore: 73 - IMDb user rating: 8.1 - Runtime: 148 minutes

Written, directed, and produced by Sean Penn, "Into the Wild" tells the story of Christopher McCandless, a loner who cashed in his law school fund and took off for the Alaskan wilderness in the 1990s. At first charmed by the slower pace of life, McCandless eventually found himself disillusioned with nature and attempted to return to society before making a grave mistake that would cost him everything. The story is based on a nonfiction book written by Jon Krakauer, as well as information from McCandless' surviving sister, Carine McCandless.

#93. The Sea Inside (2004)

- Director: Alejandro Amenábar - Stacker score: 84.2 - Metascore: 74 - IMDb user rating: 8.0 - Runtime: 126 minutes

A Spanish-language drama, " The Sea Inside " tells the story of Ramon Sampedro, a man who became a quadriplegic after a diving accident in the 1960s and fought for 30 years for the legal right to end his own life through euthanasia. Javier Bardem stars as Sampedro in an incredibly moving performance that focuses on one individual's definition of dignity. The film won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language film in 2004.

#92. American Gangster (2007)

- Director: Ridley Scott - Stacker score: 84.2 - Metascore: 76 - IMDb user rating: 7.8 - Runtime: 157 minutes

Denzel Washington and Russell Crowe co-star in " American Gangster ," a film that chronicles the life of Fred Lucas, a gangster who smuggles heroin into the United States, essentially instigating the drug epidemic that swept Harlem and all of New York City in the 1970s. Although the film brought in $266 million at the box office, those who were connected with the case in real life, including Lucas himself , have argued that it takes too many liberties and strays pretty far from the truth.

#91. The Killing Fields (1984)

- Director: Roland Joffé - Stacker score: 84.2 - Metascore: 76 - IMDb user rating: 7.8 - Runtime: 141 minutes

Nominated for seven Oscars at the 57th Academy Awards, " The Killing Fields " tells the story of two journalists, American Sydney Schanberg and Cambodian Dith Pran, who are covering the country's civil war and find themselves trapped when Pol Pot begins his bloody Year Zero cleansing campaign. Critics loved the film, including Adrian Turner from Radio Times , who wrote, "Few feature films have captured a nation's agony more dramatically."

#90. Birdman of Alcatraz (1962)

- Directors: John Frankenheimer, Charles Crichton - Stacker score: 84.2 - Metascore: 76 - IMDb user rating: 7.8 - Runtime: 147 minutes

One of the looser retellings on our list, "Birdman of Alcatraz" is about a man (Burt Lancaster) serving a life sentence for murder who becomes an expert on birds while behind bars. The movie was based on Thomas E. Gaddis' book about Robert Stroud, the titular "birdman," and was nominated for four Academy Awards. The real Stroud died a year after the film was released, without ever seeing it .

#89. Endless Poetry (2016)

- Director: Alejandro Jodorowsky - Stacker score: 84.2 - Metascore: 78 - IMDb user rating: 7.6 - Runtime: 128 minutes

Surrealist filmmaker Alejandro Jodorowsky tells his own life story in " Endless Poetry ." The second installment of his cinematic memoir, the film is set in 1940s Chile, when Jodorowsky is a young man just breaking into the country's artistic circles. Very experimental in its form, the film doesn't accommodate casual viewing but offers a fascinating story for those willing to pay close attention.

#88. An Angel at My Table (1990)

- Director: Jane Campion - Stacker score: 84.2 - Metascore: 79 - IMDb user rating: 7.5 - Runtime: 158 minutes

The story of New Zealand author Janet Frame's life, " An Angel at My Table " is based on Frame's three autobiographies and uses three different actresses to portray her at different points in her life, from her impoverished childhood through her time at a mental institution (wrongly diagnosed with schizophrenia) to the beginning of her wildly successful writing career. The film swept awards in New Zealand and won a Special Jury Prize at the Venice Film Festival.

#87. Rabbit-Proof Fence (2002)

- Director: Phillip Noyce - Stacker score: 84.2 - Metascore: 80 - IMDb user rating: 7.4 - Runtime: 94 minutes

From 1910 to 1970, Australia had an official child-removal policy that took biracial Aboriginal children from their homes and placed them in state-run schools and indentured servitude. " Rabbit-Proof Fence " tells the true story of three children from the Stolen Generation who escape their school and walk some 1,500 miles home, all while being pursued by police officers and trackers. Peter Gabriel provided the soundtrack for the heart-wrenching film.

#86. Love & Mercy (2014)

- Director: Bill Pohlad - Stacker score: 84.2 - Metascore: 80 - IMDb user rating: 7.4 - Runtime: 121 minutes

For years, Brian Wilson, leader of the Beach Boys, struggled with mental illness , even spending a length of time in a controversial 24-hour therapy program. "Love & Mercy" chronicles Wilson's struggles in a way that Wilson himself called "very factual." Paul Dano and John Cusack both play the musician at different points in his life, and Elizabeth Banks gives an inspired performance as Wilson's second wife, Melinda.

#85. Good Night, and Good Luck (2005)

- Director: George Clooney - Stacker score: 84.2 - Metascore: 80 - IMDb user rating: 7.4 - Runtime: 93 minutes

" Good Night, and Good Luck " demonstrates the immense power for change that journalists are capable of wielding in the United States. Directed by and starring George Clooney, the film is set in the 1950s, when a fear of communism led by Senator Joseph McCarthy was sweeping the nation. It tells the story of heroic reporter Edward R. Murrow and producer Fred W. Friendly, who used their news show to stand up to McCarthy and remove his cancerous lies from the public eye. The film and its message remain incredibly relevant to today's political polarization.

#84. Il Divo (2008)

- Director: Paolo Sorrentino - Stacker score: 84.2 - Metascore: 81 - IMDb user rating: 7.3 - Runtime: 110 minutes

"Il Divo" translates to "The Divine Performer," a fitting title for this 2008 film that explores the life of seven-time Italian Prime Minister Giulio Andreotti, who had alleged ties to the Mafia. The story begins in 1992 as Andreotti is elected for the seventh time, then covers his failed presidency bid and bribe scandal, ultimately ending with his trial in 1995. The Guardian called the movie " a macabre masterpiece ."

#83. The General (1998)

- Director: John Boorman - Stacker score: 84.2 - Metascore: 81 - IMDb user rating: 7.3 - Runtime: 124 minutes

Martin Cahill was an Irish criminal who managed to pull off two incredibly daring robberies (totaling about $60 million), a feat that turned him into a bit of a folk hero. " The General " tells the story of his life, including his murder by a member of the Irish Republican Army after he became involved in politics. While Cahill (played by Brendan Gleeson) was far from a good man, the 1998 movie will make you admire the way he stuck to his morals, even when they were questionable.

#82. Steve Jobs (2015)

- Director: Danny Boyle - Stacker score: 84.2 - Metascore: 82 - IMDb user rating: 7.2 - Runtime: 122 minutes

Since his death in 2011, there have been several movies and documentaries about Apple co-founder and tech guru Steve Jobs, but this 2015 biopic is among the best . Michael Fassbender brings the turtleneck-loving visionary to life in the film, which covers three different product launches that took place between 1984 and 1998. Unlike many other Jobs films, this movie also focuses on his relationship with his daughter, Lisa, whom he had with ex-girlfriend Chrisann Brennan and refused to support for many years, despite his massive wealth.

#81. Vincere (2009)

- Director: Marco Bellocchio - Stacker score: 84.2 - Metascore: 85 - IMDb user rating: 6.9 - Runtime: 128 minutes

Ida Dalser may be, in many ways, one of history's most important women, but her name and memory have largely been forgotten by the general public. Italian dictator Benito Mussolini's first wife and the mother of his son Benito Albino, Dasler financed a newspaper in which Mussolini shared and expounded on his political views, garnering support for his fascist platform. Although the film occasionally steps away from the facts of the story, it's still a wonderful primer for those who wish to know more about the rise of the politician and those who shaped him.

#80. Rush (2013)

- Director: Ron Howard - Stacker score: 84.7 - Metascore: 74 - IMDb user rating: 8.1 - Runtime: 123 minutes

The first sports film on our list, " Rush " chronicles the 1970s rivalry between two of Formula One's best-known drivers, James Hunt and Niki Lauda. The real Lauda has publicly stated that the film holds true to the reality of their lives, in spite of the fact that it omits the close friendship the men shared later in life. It also received accolades for the accuracy with which it portrays F1 racing and culture.

#79. Control (2007)

- Director: Anton Corbijn - Stacker score: 84.7 - Metascore: 78 - IMDb user rating: 7.7 - Runtime: 122 minutes

Joy Division's late singer Ian Curtis is the focus of this 2007 biopic co-produced by his widow, Deborah. The film chronicles the rise of the band as well as Ian and Deborah's relationship, his epilepsy diagnosis, and the fallout from his affair with journalist Annik Honore. Debuting at the Cannes Film Festival, the movie picked up several awards in the festival circuit and took home a British Academy Film Award.

#78. Missing (1982)

- Director: Costa-Gavras - Stacker score: 84.7 - Metascore: 78 - IMDb user rating: 7.7 - Runtime: 122 minutes

In September 1973, American journalist Charles Horman disappeared during the Chilean coup that disposed of then-president Salvador Allende. " Missing " recounts the desperate search Charles' father and wife undertook to learn of his fate and their eventual realization that the United States government had not only aided the coup but had washed their hands of Horman. The Academy Award-winning drama stars Jack Lemmon and Sissy Spacek.

#77. Selma (2014)

- Director: Ava DuVernay - Stacker score: 84.7 - Metascore: 80 - IMDb user rating: 7.5 - Runtime: 128 minutes

Ava DuVernay directed this historical film that chronicles the 1965 voting rights march from Selma to Montgomery that was led by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., John Lewis, and Hosea Williams. Covering a three-month period leading up to the march, the film largely focuses on King's role in the events without discrediting the role the other leaders had in shaping this important piece of American history. The film features the Oscar-winning song "Glory" by John Legend and Common.

#76. The End of the Tour (2015)

- Director: James Ponsoldt - Stacker score: 84.7 - Metascore: 82 - IMDb user rating: 7.3 - Runtime: 106 minutes

" The End of the Tour " tells the famous story of Rolling Stone reporter David Lipsky's five-day interview with novelist David Foster Wallace. Based on Lipsky's 2011 book "Although of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself," the movie is set just after the release of Wallace's epic novel "Infinite Jest," when the duo set off on a road trip. Wallace's estate and many of his living friends objected to the film , saying that it didn't capture the famous writer as he really was.

#75. The Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Maki (2016)

- Director: Juho Kuosmanen - Stacker score: 84.7 - Metascore: 83 - IMDb user rating: 7.2 - Runtime: 92 minutes

Immensely talented Finnish boxer Olli Maki has a shot at the World Featherweight title in 1962, something he's been training for his entire life. But when the small-town boy falls in love with a local girl named Raija, he begins to question his dedication to the brutal sport. " The Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Maki ," Finland's entry for the 2016 Academy Awards, features a cameo from the retired fighter and won the Un Certain Regard prize at the Cannes Film Festival.

#74. Catch Me If You Can (2002)

- Director: Steven Spielberg - Stacker score: 85.2 - Metascore: 75 - IMDb user rating: 8.1 - Runtime: 141 minutes

A runaway commercial success, " Catch Me If You Can " tells the stranger-than-fiction story of con man turned FBI assistant Frank Abagnale. The Steven Spielberg film, which stars Leonardo DiCaprio and is based on the con artist's 1980 book, grossed more than $352 million at the box office. Abagnale himself makes a cameo as the officer who arrests DiCaprio's character on Christmas Eve, 1969.

#73. Inherit the Wind (1960)

- Director: Stanley Kramer - Stacker score: 85.2 - Metascore: 75 - IMDb user rating: 8.1 - Runtime: 128 minutes

While it changes the names of all of the key players, 1960's " Inherit the Wind " is clearly about the Scopes Monkey Trial, which argued the legality of teaching evolution over creationism. Based on the play of the same name, the film starred veteran actors Spencer Tracy, Gene Kelly, and Fredric March. In spite of the fact that the storyline of the film varies substantially from real-life events, it's had an outsized impact on the general public's opinion and beliefs about the case, inspiring debate over a biopic's obligation to stick to the hard facts of its topic.

#72. Glory (1989)

- Director: Edward Zwick - Stacker score: 85.2 - Metascore: 78 - IMDb user rating: 7.8 - Runtime: 122 minutes

A stalwart of high school history classes, " Glory " tells the story of the first all-Black regiment in the Civil War, the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry. Starring big names like Matthew Broderick, Denzel Washington, and Morgan Freeman, the movie was an instant success with critics despite a middling performance at the box office. Historians agree that the film, which is based on Captain Robert Gould Shaw's personal letters, adheres pretty closely to the historical record.

#71. The Damned United (2009)

- Director: Tom Hooper - Stacker score: 85.2 - Metascore: 81 - IMDb user rating: 7.5 - Runtime: 98 minutes

"The Damned United" is another biopic whose adherence to real events is highly questionable . The film is based on a novel loosely inspired by Brian Clough's 44-day tenure as the manager of English football team Leeds United, and the Clough family has alleged that the film bears little resemblance to reality.

#70. The Wolf of Wall Street (2013)

- Director: Martin Scorsese - Stacker score: 85.8 - Metascore: 75 - IMDb user rating: 8.2 - Runtime: 180 minutes

It's no secret that Wall Street is full of would-be fraudsters and schemers, but few hold a candle to 1990s trader Jordan Belfort, whose company, Stratton Oakmont, engaged in corruption and fraud at never-before-seen levels. Martin Scorsese's smash hit " The Wolf of Wall Street " tells the true story of the unparalleled misconduct laid bare in Belfort's memoir of the same name. An awards season darling, the movie was nominated for five Oscars and won a Golden Globe for star Leonardo DiCaprio.

#69. Pride (2014)

- Director: Matthew Warchus - Stacker score: 85.8 - Metascore: 79 - IMDb user rating: 7.8 - Runtime: 119 minutes

One of history's more unlikely events, the Lesbians and Gays Support the Miners campaign is chronicled in the British drama " Pride ." In the 1980s, both the U.K.'s LGBTQ+ community and its coal miners were being threatened by Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and her Conservative Party, a fact that inspired them to join together and fight for their rights, an unlikely alliance that paid off for both groups. This film would make an excellent watch for those interested in lesser-known corners of history.

#68. The Fighter (2010)

- Director: David O. Russell - Stacker score: 85.8 - Metascore: 79 - IMDb user rating: 7.8 - Runtime: 116 minutes

Junior welterweight boxer "Irish" Micky Ward fights his way out from under the shadow of his older, more successful, and troubled brother Dicky Eklund in the sports drama " The Fighter ." The intense flick contains some extraordinary acting, as Mark Wahlberg shines as Micky, while Christian Bale and Amy Adams give Oscar-winning turns as brother Dicky and girlfriend Charlene, respectively.

#67. Frost/Nixon (2008)

- Director: Ron Howard - Stacker score: 85.8 - Metascore: 80 - IMDb user rating: 7.7 - Runtime: 122 minutes

In 1977, three years after he left office, former President Richard Nixon agreed to a single, tell-all interview with British television personality David Frost. It is assumed that Nixon thought he'd be able to outfox the Brit, but he eventually found himself backed into a corner by questions about the Watergate scandal. This 2008 film tells the whole story of the legendary Frost-Nixon interviews and was based on a stage play of the same name, which also starred Frank Langella (Nixon) and Michael Sheen (Frost).

#66. 127 Hours (2010)

- Director: Danny Boyle - Stacker score: 85.8 - Metascore: 82 - IMDb user rating: 7.5 - Runtime: 94 minutes

Academy Award winner Danny Boyle directed "127 Hours," an intense film about a hiker named Aron Ralston who found himself trapped by a boulder in a remote canyon in Utah. Over the course of his ordeal, Ralston examines his life and finds that he is willing to do whatever it takes to escape—even if it means cutting off his own arm. The real-life Ralston (played by James Franco) has said that the movie is incredibly true to his harrowing experience, if a little less gruesome .

#65. First Man (2018)

- Director: Damien Chazelle - Stacker score: 85.8 - Metascore: 84 - IMDb user rating: 7.3 - Runtime: 141 minutes

On July 20, 1969, Neil Armstrong became the first man to walk on the moon. This drama chronicles the decade of Armstrong's life leading to that historical moment, including the loss of his daughter and much of his intense training. Ryan Gosling stars in the film, which was nominated for major awards at the Golden Globes, Academy Awards, Critics Choice Awards, and British Academy Film Awards.

#64. Before Night Falls (2000)

- Director: Julian Schnabel - Stacker score: 85.8 - Metascore: 85 - IMDb user rating: 7.2 - Runtime: 133 minutes

An episodic look at the life of Cuban poet, novelist, and Castro supporter-turned-critic Reinaldo Arenas, " Before Night Falls " was based on the man's own autobiography. An openly gay man, Arenas spent much of his life under careful watch by the government and did several stints in jail before managing to escape to the United States in 1980, where he'd eventually die of AIDS. Javier Bardem and Johnny Depp both have leading roles in this visually arresting picture.

#63. Il Postino (1994)

- Directors: Michael Radford, Massimo Troisi - Stacker score: 86.3 - Metascore: 81 - IMDb user rating: 7.7 - Runtime: 108 minutes

A fictional tale peppered with facts, "Il Postino" follows the friendship that develops between a lowly Italian postman and the Chilean poet Pablo Neruda, who has been exiled from his home country for political reasons. Massimo Troisi, who played the postman, died of a heart attack the day after the film wrapped and was never able to bask in its critical and commercial success. He was, however, awarded a posthumous Oscar for his work.

#62. Hunger (2008)

- Director: Steve McQueen - Stacker score: 86.3 - Metascore: 82 - IMDb user rating: 7.6 - Runtime: 96 minutes

A dramatic retelling of the hunger strike that took place in Northern Ireland's Maze Prison in 1981, " Hunger " follows the final days and death of Bobby Sands, an IRA member and the first prisoner to die in the strike. By turns unflinching and abstract, the film won the Camera d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival. Steve McQueen directed the intense, harrowing picture, with Michael Fassbender starring as Sands.

#61. Henry V (1989)

- Director: Kenneth Branagh - Stacker score: 86.3 - Metascore: 83 - IMDb user rating: 7.5 - Runtime: 137 minutes

Shakespeare's classic historical play " Henry V '' was brought to the screen in this 1989 film. Directed by Kenneth Branagh, who also stars as the king, the movie chronicles the events of the 15th-century Battle of Agincourt, in which the English continued their Hundred Years' War against the French.

#60. BlacKkKlansman (2018)

- Director: Spike Lee - Stacker score: 86.3 - Metascore: 83 - IMDb user rating: 7.5 - Runtime: 135 minutes

In another stranger-than-fiction tale, African American detective Ron Stallworth infiltrated a Colorado Springs branch of the Ku Klux Klan in the late 1970s. Wowed by Stallworth's story , Spike Lee set out to bring it to life, casting John David Washington as the young detective, Adam Driver as his Jewish colleague assisting in the sting, and Topher Grace as Grand Wizard David Duke. The finished project was widely praised by critics and won several prestigious awards, including Cannes' Grand Prix and the Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay.

#59. Seraphine (2008)

- Director: Martin Provost - Stacker score: 86.3 - Metascore: 84 - IMDb user rating: 7.4 - Runtime: 125 minutes

A self-taught French painter who holds down a day job as a housekeeper and walks the line between genius and mentally ill is the subject of this 2008 French film. Today, Seraphine Louis' works hang in museums around the world, but her life was far from a happy one, and she died in the early 20th century in a mental institution, destitute and alone. This simple, subtle biopic, which stars Yolande Moreau, won seven Cesars (the French equivalent of the Academy Award).

#58. 24 Hour Party People (2002)

- Director: Michael Winterbottom - Stacker score: 86.3 - Metascore: 85 - IMDb user rating: 7.3 - Runtime: 117 minutes

In the 1970s, Tony Wilson established Factory Records , which signed bands like Joy Division and the Happy Mondays and sparked a musical revolution, eventually leading to the development of the legendary Hacienda dance club in Manchester, England. A blend of real events, newsreel footage, urban legends, and completely fictional tidbits, this movie expertly tells the raucous story of a man, city, and movement that made up the rules as they went along.

#57. Can You Ever Forgive Me? (2018)

- Director: Marielle Heller - Stacker score: 86.3 - Metascore: 87 - IMDb user rating: 7.1 - Runtime: 106 minutes

Melissa McCarthy stepped away from her typical comedic roles in " Can You Ever Forgive Me? " She plays Lee Israel, a failing writer who tries to revitalize her career by selling forged letters from dead celebrities. While the movie certainly has funny moments, it's a true crime tale that features an unlikable heroine, a gamble that paid off when McCarthy and co-star Richard E. Grant were nominated for their performances at the Academy Awards and Golden Globes.

#56. The Elephant Man (1980)

- Director: David Lynch - Stacker score: 86.9 - Metascore: 78 - IMDb user rating: 8.1 - Runtime: 124 minutes

Set in Victorian London, " The Elephant Man " chronicles the relationship that formed between a surgeon named Dr. Frederick Treves and John Merrick, a severely disfigured man who earns his living as a freak-show performer called the Elephant Man. Adapted from two different books, one written by Treves himself, the story garnered praise for the way it handled disability and difference. It also inspired the creation of the Academy Award for Best Makeup and Hairstyling after industry insiders complained that the film's incredible work wasn't given enough recognition.

#55. Gandhi (1982)

- Director: Richard Attenborough - Stacker score: 86.9 - Metascore: 79 - IMDb user rating: 8.0 - Runtime: 191 minutes

The life of civil rights leader Mahatma Gandhi has been portrayed in numerous ways via several media since his death in 1948, but perhaps never as movingly as in this 1982 biopic. The story begins with Gandhi being thrown off a South African train in 1893 and concludes with his assassination some 55 years later. Ben Kingsley played Gandhi and won an Academy Award (one of eight the film took home) for his efforts.

#54. Milk (2008)

- Director: Gus Van Sant - Stacker score: 86.9 - Metascore: 84 - IMDb user rating: 7.5 - Runtime: 128 minutes

The life of an openly gay activist who becomes the first LGBTQ+ person elected to public office in California is the subject of " Milk ." Using archival footage of Harvey Milk's life, the movie covers the time period from Milk's 40th birthday until his shocking assassination in 1978. Sean Penn's performance as the title character was awe-inspiring and earned him the Academy Award for Best Actor.

#53. The Long Day Closes (1992)

- Director: Terence Davies - Stacker score: 86.9 - Metascore: 85 - IMDb user rating: 7.4 - Runtime: 85 minutes

Terence Davies' autobiographical film follows a boy named Bud as he comes of age in 1950s Liverpool, fearing the ever-present eye of the Catholic Church and realizing both his love for cinema and his homosexuality. The film doesn't follow a straightforward narrative but rather jumps back-and-forth through time, infusing each moment with precisely chosen pieces of popular music and cinema.

#52. Lincoln (2012)

- Director: Steven Spielberg - Stacker score: 86.9 - Metascore: 86 - IMDb user rating: 7.3 - Runtime: 150 minutes

The final four months of U.S. president Abraham Lincoln's life are explored in detail in Steven Spielberg's 2012 historical smash "Lincoln." Starring Daniel Day-Lewis as the gentle, gangly leader, it primarily focuses on Lincoln's determination to abolish slavery and pass the 13th Amendment. Sally Field co-stars as Mary Todd Lincoln, with Joseph Gordon-Levitt as the 16th president's son, Robert. The movie was nominated for 12 Academy Awards, winning two, including Best Actor for Day-Lewis.

#51. Hotel Rwanda (2004)

- Director: Terry George - Stacker score: 87.4 - Metascore: 79 - IMDb user rating: 8.1 - Runtime: 121 minutes

Tackling tough topics like genocide, violence, and political corruption, " Hotel Rwanda " is set during the Rwandan genocide of 1994, when members of the Tutsi ethnic group were hunted down and murdered by armed militias. The movie brings to life the true story of a hotel manager named Paul Rusesabagina, a Hutu who offers shelter to over 1,000 Tutsis in the Hotel des Mille Collines. While the Academy Award-winning film finishes on a relatively happy note, real life wasn't so kind: In late 2020, the real Rusesabagina was charged with "terrorism, complicity in murder, and forming an armed rebel group" by a Rwandan court.

#50. Dallas Buyers Club (2013)

- Director: Jean-Marc Vallée - Stacker score: 87.4 - Metascore: 80 - IMDb user rating: 8.0 - Runtime: 117 minutes

Ronald Woodroof was a womanizing, drug-using, homophobic electrician from Texas living a carefree life when his doctor announced that he had HIV/AIDS and would likely die in 30 days. After researching his illness, Woodroof uncovered an experimental drug that would potentially prolong his life and established the Dallas Buyers Club, whose mission was to import the drug from Mexico so that it could be easily accessible to everyone who needed it. Along the way, Woodroof (played by Matthew McConaughey in an Oscar-winning performance) became a compassionate friend and advocate for the legal rights of those with the disease.

#49. Captain Phillips (2013)

- Director: Paul Greengrass - Stacker score: 87.4 - Metascore: 82 - IMDb user rating: 7.8 - Runtime: 134 minutes

In 2009, for the first time in 200 years, a U.S. container ship was hijacked by a group of Somali pirates some 145 miles off the Somali coast. This thriller, inspired by those events , stars Tom Hanks as the American captain of the ship and chronicles the tense relationship that develops between him and the pirate captain who holds him hostage, played by newcomer Barkhad Abdi. While Hanks' character is hailed as a hero in the film, the real-life crew of the ship argues that this wasn't the case in reality.

#48. Fruitvale Station (2013)

- Director: Ryan Coogler - Stacker score: 87.4 - Metascore: 85 - IMDb user rating: 7.5 - Runtime: 85 minutes

" Fruitvale Station " tells the true story of Oscar Grant, a Bay Area resident and young Black man who was killed by Oakland Police officers on New Year's Eve 2008. His murder would inspire protests and unrest in the California town, events that fall outside the scope of this film but testify to the heated controversy of the incident. Michael B. Jordan stars in the movie, which made its debut at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival and collected a number of prizes there and elsewhere.

#47. Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters (1985)

- Director: Paul Schrader - Stacker score: 88 - Metascore: 81 - IMDb user rating: 8.0 - Runtime: 120 minutes

Inspired by the life of Japanese author Yukio Mishima , this biopic freely weaves fact, fiction, and portions of Mishima's own writing to create a stunning picture of the artist's life and death. Francis Ford Coppola and George Lucas worked as executive producers on the film, which earned director Paul Schrader a special prize at Cannes.

#46. The Wind Rises (2013)

- Director: Hayao Miyazaki - Stacker score: 88 - Metascore: 83 - IMDb user rating: 7.8 - Runtime: 126 minutes

The first animated movie on this list, " The Wind Rises " follows the life of Jiro Horikoshi, the designer of several of Japan's fighter planes during World War II. The anime film by Studio Ghibli became Japan's highest-grossing film in 2013, bringing in $116.1 million at the domestic box office. It was widely appreciated outside of Japan as well, winning Academy Awards, Golden Globes, and other animation prizes.

#45. Boys Don't Cry (1999)

- Director: Kimberly Peirce - Stacker score: 88 - Metascore: 86 - IMDb user rating: 7.5 - Runtime: 118 minutes

Brandon Teena was a trans man from rural Nebraska who was passionately in pursuit of his true self and true love before becoming the victim of a vicious hate crime perpetrated by two male acquaintances. " Boys Don't Cry " is a harrowing depiction of Teena's fate starring Hillary Swank and featuring Chloe Sevigny as Teena's girlfriend, Lana. While the movie was critically acclaimed, several people with links to the case, including the real Lana (who has been alleged to have been a part of the hate crime) have spoken out against it, saying that the on-screen story doesn't match the facts.

#44. Capote (2005)

- Director: Bennett Miller - Stacker score: 88 - Metascore: 88 - IMDb user rating: 7.3 - Runtime: 114 minutes

Philip Seymour Hoffman won multiple awards, including an Oscar, for his portrayal of author Truman Capote in this 2005 biopic . The events of the film center around the time period in which Capote was writing "In Cold Blood" and include the friendship he developed with Perry Smith, one of the killers who is on death row. The movie marked Bennet Miller's directorial debut.

#43. The Madness of King George (1994)

- Director: Nicholas Hytner - Stacker score: 88 - Metascore: 89 - IMDb user rating: 7.2 - Runtime: 110 minutes

It is believed that King George III suffered from mental illness, a malady highly misunderstood in 1788 but that drove him to act erratically and rendered him unfit to rule a country. " The Madness of King George " focuses on the monarch's decline as well as the troubled relationship he shared with his son, the Prince of Wales. Rupert Graves and Helen Mirren both lent their talents to the acclaimed British production.

#42. Ford v Ferrari (2019)

- Director: James Mangold - Stacker score: 88.5 - Metascore: 81 - IMDb user rating: 8.1 - Runtime: 152 minutes

In "Ford v Ferrari," American car designer Carroll Shelby and fearless British driver Ken Miles come together under the Ford Motor Company banner with hopes of defeating the dominant Ferrari racing team at the 24 Hours of Le Mans race in France. The movie, which tells the twisty story of the most bitter rivalry in auto racing history, stars Matt Damon and Christian Bale as Shelby and Miles, respectively.

#41. The Insider (1999)

- Director: Michael Mann - Stacker score: 88.5 - Metascore: 84 - IMDb user rating: 7.8 - Runtime: 157 minutes

An industry insider appears on a "60-Minutes" expose on Big Tobacco, risking his own safety as well as the safety of his CBS producer in " The Insider ". Accurate in its broad strokes, the film demonstrates the influence of journalism as well as the power of those who choose to stand up for what's right. Director Michael Mann martialed an abundance of star power for this intense drama, casting Al Pacino, Russell Crowe, and Christopher Plummer in leading roles.

#40. Coal Miner's Daughter (1980)

- Director: Michael Apted - Stacker score: 88.5 - Metascore: 87 - IMDb user rating: 7.5 - Runtime: 124 minutes

Based on country music star Loretta Lynn's biography, " Coal Miner's Daughter " spans from Lynn's birth into poverty and marriage at 13 to her emergence as one of the genre's leading voices. Sissy Spacek, who plays Lynn, accompanied the singer on tour in order to better embody the country queen's mannerisms and demeanor—a move that paid off when she won the Oscar for Best Actress for her performance.

#39. Richard III (1955)

- Director: Laurence Olivier - Stacker score: 88.5 - Metascore: 88 - IMDb user rating: 7.4 - Runtime: 161 minutes

Another adaptation of a Shakespeare play, " Richard III " famously relates how and why Richard, Duke of Gloucester, stole the crown from his brother, King Edward IV. One of three films directed by Laurence Olivier to bring Shakespeare's work to the screen, the Criterion Collection deems it "ravishing" and "visually inspired."

#38. Mr. Turner (2014)

- Director: Mike Leigh - Stacker score: 88.5 - Metascore: 94 - IMDb user rating: 6.8 - Runtime: 150 minutes

The story of the last 25 years in the life of the talented, eccentric Romantic painter J.M.W. Turner (played by Timothy Spall) is explored in this drama. The New York Times described Mike Leigh's portrait as "loving" and "unsentimental," one that "patiently and thoroughly demolishes more than a century's worth of mythology about what art is and how artists work."

#37. Argo (2012)

- Director: Ben Affleck - Stacker score: 89.1 - Metascore: 86 - IMDb user rating: 7.7 - Runtime: 120 minutes

No movie emphasizes the power of Hollywood quite like "Argo," which tells the story of a harebrained CIA scheme that sought to rescue six American diplomats from Iran (during the Iran hostage crisis) under the guise of shooting a science fiction movie. Based on the real-life accounts of the CIA operative Tony Mendez in his book "The Master of Disguise," the movie stars Ben Affleck, who also directs. 

#36. Moneyball (2011)

- Director: Bennett Miller - Stacker score: 89.1 - Metascore: 87 - IMDb user rating: 7.6 - Runtime: 133 minutes

Professional sports are as much games of money as they are of talent, which means that the poorest teams are often the least competitive. One exception is the 2002 Oakland Athletics baseball team. " Moneyball " tells the truly impressive story of A's general manager Billy Beane, who uses statistical data to scout and pick players, creating an aggressively competitive team despite having the lowest salary constraints in Major League Baseball.

#35. Searching for Bobby Fischer (1993)

- Director: Steven Zaillian - Stacker score: 89.1 - Metascore: 89 - IMDb user rating: 7.4 - Runtime: 109 minutes

" Searching for Bobby Fischer " focuses on Josh Waitzkin, a 7-year-old chess prodigy who loses his love for the game under a ruthless and strict coach, then finds it again with a much more relaxed tutor. Based on a book written by Waitzkin's father, the movie struck Roger Ebert as "a film of remarkable sensitivity and insight" and was nominated for an Academy Award for its Best Cinematography.

#34. Funny Girl (1968)

- Director: William Wyler - Stacker score: 89.1 - Metascore: 89 - IMDb user rating: 7.4 - Runtime: 151 minutes

Loosely based on the life and career of Broadway star Fanny Brice and her relationship with Nicky Arnstein, "Funny Girl" was the highest-grossing film of 1968 . Barbra Streisand, in her feature film debut, won an Oscar for her portrayal of Brice.  

#33. The Tale (2018)

- Director: Jennifer Fox - Stacker score: 89.1 - Metascore: 90 - IMDb user rating: 7.3 - Runtime: 114 minutes

Jennifer Fox's semiautobiographical " The Tale " explores long-buried, darker aspects of her relationships with two of her childhood coaches, which came to light as she worked on a documentary about child rape victims. Laura Dern stars as Fox in the movie, which made its debut at the Sundance Film Festival before receiving a wider release on HBO.

#32. Topsy-Turvy (1999)

- Director: Mike Leigh - Stacker score: 89.1 - Metascore: 90 - IMDb user rating: 7.3 - Runtime: 160 minutes

The musical " Topsy-Turvy " depicts the relationship between Victorian-era theatrical partners Sir Arthur Sullivan and W.S. Gilbert. After their show "Princess Ida" flops, the duo consider going their separate ways but agree to complete at least one more production, "The Mikado," which ends up becoming one of their greatest successes. An unexpectedly delightful period piece, the movie explores the difficult reality of the creative professions.

#31. Downfall (2004)

- Director: Oliver Hirschbiegel - Stacker score: 89.6 - Metascore: 82 - IMDb user rating: 8.2 - Runtime: 156 minutes

Set during WWII's Battle of Berlin, " Downfall " recounts Adolf Hitler's final days, spent in a bunker miles below the city. Based on a memoir by Traudl Junge, a secretary for Hitler, the movie brings Hitler's mental decline, which Junge observed firsthand, to life in a way few others have ever been able to. The movie sparked a serious conversation about the moral and ethical questions involved in portraying Hitler, one of the most monstrous villains in world history, with even a hint of humanity.

#30. The Miracle Worker (1962)

- Director: Arthur Penn - Stacker score: 89.6 - Metascore: 83 - IMDb user rating: 8.1 - Runtime: 106 minutes

Annie Sullivan, a "half-blind Yankee schoolgirl," manages to teach the deaf, blind, and mute Helen Keller how to communicate in " The Miracle Worker ." An instant critical success in 1962, both Anne Bancroft, who played Annie Sullivan, and Patty Duke, who played Helen Keller, took home Academy Awards for their performances. The movie was adapted from the Broadway play of the same name, which also starred the same actresses.

#29. All the President's Men (1976)

- Director: Alan J. Pakula - Stacker score: 89.6 - Metascore: 84 - IMDb user rating: 8.0 - Runtime: 138 minutes

The dramatic events surrounding Washington Post reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein's unveiling of the Watergate scandal lie at the center of " All the President's Men ." The award-winning political thriller was based on the 1974 book of the same name written by the two journalists, portrayed by Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman, respectively.

#28. Bonnie and Clyde (1967)

- Director: Arthur Penn - Stacker score: 89.6 - Metascore: 86 - IMDb user rating: 7.8 - Runtime: 111 minutes

Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway bring America's most notorious crime couple to life in this 1967 telling of the Bonnie and Clyde story. A landmark film and one of the first of the New Hollywood era, the movie became famous for the groundbreakingly realistic way it depicted violence and sex, something that wasn't done in cinema at the time. Upon its release, Roger Ebert even predicted that it will come to be seen as the "definitive film of the 1960s."

#27. Shine (1996)

- Director: Scott Hicks - Stacker score: 89.6 - Metascore: 87 - IMDb user rating: 7.7 - Runtime: 105 minutes

Geoffrey Rush's breakout role was as pianist David Helfgott in the Australian drama "Shine." Rush's depiction of the musician, who was afflicted by schizophrenic disorder and spent years living in institutions, won him an Oscar and launched a successful, decades-long career. While the film was a critical success, Helfgott's real-life siblings were more divided in their reception of it, with one actively campaigning against it and the other two happy with its portrayal of their sibling and his tumultuous family life.

#26. Serpico (1973)

- Director: Sidney Lumet - Stacker score: 89.6 - Metascore: 87 - IMDb user rating: 7.7 - Runtime: 130 minutes

In " Serpico ," a New York City cop blows the whistle on the corruption that runs rampant within the NYPD, which prompts an investigation by the Knapp Commission. Al Pacino plays Frank Serpico , who in real life experienced ostracization and hate from those both inside and outside the force, and saw his act as shameful rather than heroic.

#25. Mutiny on the Bounty (1935)

- Director: Frank Lloyd - Stacker score: 89.6 - Metascore: 87 - IMDb user rating: 7.7 - Runtime: 132 minutes

One of the biggest hits of the 1930s, " Mutiny on the Bounty " may not be historically accurate, but it sure is fun to watch. The movie retraces the classic tale of the HMS Bounty, whose first mate (played by Clark Gable) launches a mutiny against the tyrannical Captain Bligh (Charles Laughton) on an 18th-century voyage from Tahiti. The movie won the Academy Award for Best Picture in 1935.

#24. American Splendor (2003)

- Directors: Shari Springer Berman, Robert Pulcini - Stacker score: 89.6 - Metascore: 90 - IMDb user rating: 7.4 - Runtime: 101 minutes

A blend of documentary, animation, and live action, as well as fact and fiction, " American Splendor " relays the complicated story of Harvey Pekar, the creator of the titular comic book series. In spite of its complicated-sounding setup, the film is a mesmerizing, absorbing watch full of delightful details. Paul Giamatti plays Pekar and Hope Davis his wife, Joyce—except when the real-life couple steps in for various scenes.

#23. The Queen (2006)

- Director: Stephen Frears - Stacker score: 89.6 - Metascore: 91 - IMDb user rating: 7.3 - Runtime: 103 minutes

Beginning with the death of Diana, Princess of Wales, " The Queen " depicts Elizabeth II's struggle to publicly react to the news appropriately, as she realizes just how drastically the culture of her country has shifted, leaving her without a clear role. Helen Mirren won an Oscar and received exorbitant praise for her performance in the leading role, with the Queen herself praising her work and inviting her to dinner .

#22. In the Name of the Father (1993)

- Director: Jim Sheridan - Stacker score: 90.2 - Metascore: 84 - IMDb user rating: 8.1 - Runtime: 133 minutes

The Guildford Four were a group of men who were wrongly convicted of the politically motivated 1974 Guildford pub bombings that killed several people. " In the Name of the Father " explores this complicated story and the way it impacted the lives of the four men, as well as those of others connected to them. Daniel Day-Lewis turns in an impressive early performance as one of the accused, Gerry Conlon, whose autobiography " Proved Innocent " provides the basis for the film.

#21. Reversal of Fortune (1990)

- Director: Barbet Schroeder - Stacker score: 90.2 - Metascore: 93 - IMDb user rating: 7.2 - Runtime: 111 minutes

A courtroom drama, " Reversal of Fortune " follows the real-life case of Claus von Bulow, a wealthy husband accused of trying to murder his socialite wife by giving her an overdose of insulin. Told from the perspective of the husband's lawyer, Alan Dershowitz, who struggles with his own questions of the husband's innocence, the film's smart script was derived primarily from Dershowitz's memoir. The film stars Glenn Close, Jeremy Irons, and Ron Silver.

#20. Spartacus (1960)

- Director: Stanley Kubrick - Stacker score: 90.7 - Metascore: 87 - IMDb user rating: 7.9 - Runtime: 197 minutes

Hailed as an intellectual epic, " Spartacus " features a hero who is denied a typical victory and is instead consoled with the promise that his ideas will survive in his stead. The down-ending movie is about a Thracian slave who leads a violent revolt against the Roman Empire but ends up paying dearly for his actions. Although a huge moneymaker for Universal Studios and a critical success, director Stanley Kubrick hated the film and never included it in his canon.

#19. Yankee Doodle Dandy (1942)

- Director: Michael Curtiz - Stacker score: 90.7 - Metascore: 89 - IMDb user rating: 7.7 - Runtime: 126 minutes

George M. Cohan was one of Broadway's biggest stars, a playwright, composer, actor, dancer, and singer who wrote his own shows in the earliest years of the 20th century. "Yankee Doodle Dandy" is a musical that honors the performer's life, though it strays pretty far from the truth despite Cohan himself briefly serving as a consultant.

#18. The Favourite (2018)

- Director: Yorgos Lanthimos - Stacker score: 90.7 - Metascore: 91 - IMDb user rating: 7.5 - Runtime: 119 minutes

A multiple award-winner and a box-office smash, "The Favorite" follows the rivalry between two cousins, Sarah, Duchess of Marlborough, and Abigail Masham, a lady's maid, who are vying for the position of Queen Anne's court favorite. While some of the film's historical accuracy has been questioned, including the sexual and romantic relationships that exist between the women, the broad strokes of the film are certainly true to life. Olivia Colman, Rachel Weisz, and Emma Stone star in the period black comedy.

#17. Young Mr. Lincoln (1939)

- Director: John Ford - Stacker score: 91.3 - Metascore: 91 - IMDb user rating: 7.6 - Runtime: 100 minutes

The second film on the list about Abraham Lincoln, "Young Mr. Lincoln" focuses on the early years of the 16th president's life, rather than his final months. The first collaboration between John Ford and lead Henry Fonda, the movie focuses on a definitive court case (the "Almanac Trial") in which the novice lawyer finds himself wrapped up, laying the groundwork for the philosophy and morality which would guide him as one of American history's most important figures.

#16. Quiz Show (1994)

- Director: Robert Redford - Stacker score: 91.3 - Metascore: 92 - IMDb user rating: 7.5 - Runtime: 133 minutes

Robert Redford directed the docudrama set in the 1950s about a young lawyer who discovers that quiz shows like "Twenty-One" are being fixed and begins to investigate, focusing on two former contestants, a working-class Jewish man from Queens and a member of one of America's leading literary families. A critical success, the movie was a commercial failure when it was released in 1994.

#15. The King's Speech (2010)

- Director: Tom Hooper - Stacker score: 91.8 - Metascore: 88 - IMDb user rating: 8.0 - Runtime: 118 minutes

"The King's Speech" tells the story of the friendship that existed between King George VI and his speech therapist, who helped the king overcome his stutter so that he could face his subjects with confidence. Earning nominations for almost every existing award, the star-studded film was far and away one of the biggest hits of 2010.

#14. In Cold Blood (1967)

- Director: Richard Brooks - Stacker score: 91.8 - Metascore: 89 - IMDb user rating: 7.9 - Runtime: 134 minutes

Based on Truman Capote's novel of the same name, "In Cold Blood" follows two drifters who murder an entire family in a robbery gone wrong. Described as a filmmaking masterclass, the movie boasts "clinically precise editing," according to the Criterion Collection, as well as evocative black-and-white cinematography and authentic, unshowy performances.

#13. The Pianist (2002)

- Director: Roman Polanski - Stacker score: 92.9 - Metascore: 85 - IMDb user rating: 8.5 - Runtime: 150 minutes

Holocaust survivor Wladyslaw Szpilman, a Polish-Jewish pianist and composer, wrote his life story in "The Pianist," which became the basis for this Roman Polanski film. As the lead in this incredibly intense story, lead actor Adrien Brody said in 2017 that he was still recovering from the emotional toll of the story, 15 years after its release. Still, the award-winning movie is an important watch for those who seek to understand just how much the Holocaust and its aftermath shaped the world.

#12. Persepolis (2007)

- Directors: Vincent Paronnaud, Marjane Satrapi - Stacker score: 92.9 - Metascore: 90 - IMDb user rating: 8.0 - Runtime: 96 minutes

"Persepolis" is the story of an outspoken teenage girl named Marji who comes of age during the Iranian Revolution. Simple in an elegant way, the film was based on a series of graphic novels Marjane Satrapi wrote about her life. Making its debut at the Cannes Film Festival, "Persepolis" was a co-winner of the Jury Prize.

#11. Patton (1970)

- Director: Franklin J. Schaffner - Stacker score: 92.9 - Metascore: 91 - IMDb user rating: 7.9 - Runtime: 172 minutes

Famous and controversial WWII tank commander Gen. George S. Patton is the subject of this 1970s biopic, which remains among the most iconic movies ever made. George C. Scott took on the role of Patton and won an Academy Award for it (one of seven the picture took home). The film was in the works for several years before production went underway, as the United States Department of Defense was not keen on signing off on the project.

#10. Amadeus (1984)

- Director: Milos Forman - Stacker score: 93.4 - Metascore: 88 - IMDb user rating: 8.3 - Runtime: 160 minutes

The premise of "Amadeus" hinges on a fictional rivalry between Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Italian composer Antonio Salieri. Though the beef between the two is contrived, the details of Mozart's life that are woven into the film are, by and large, true. Accuracy aside, the film was quickly regarded as a classic and ended up winning eight Academy Awards, including Best Picture.

#9. Raging Bull (1980)

- Director: Martin Scorsese - Stacker score: 93.4 - Metascore: 89 - IMDb user rating: 8.2 - Runtime: 129 minutes

Martin Scorsese's "Raging Bull" tells the story of prizefighter Jake LaMotta's rise and fall. The athlete's obsessive rage and animalistic appetite led him to incredible victories within the ring but destroyed almost every aspect of his life outside it. While initially a bit of a critical and commercial flop, the movie has come to be considered Scorsese's magnum opus.

#8. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly (2007)

- Directors: Julian Schnabel, Laura Obiols - Stacker score: 94 - Metascore: 92 - IMDb user rating: 8.0 - Runtime: 112 minutes

In "The Diving Bell and the Butterfly," Elle editor Jean-Dominique Bauby suffers a massive stroke that leaves him with locked-in syndrome, a condition where almost all the muscles in his body are paralyzed except for his left eye. The French film, based on Bauby's memoir, was called "a poignant reflection on what it means to be alive" by Empire's Alan Morrison .

#7. The Social Network (2010)

- Director: David Fincher - Stacker score: 94 - Metascore: 95 - IMDb user rating: 7.7 - Runtime: 120 minutes

Before Facebook became a dominant force in our lives and culture, monitoring our every move, it was a way for college students to connect and make new friends. "The Social Network" tells the story of the platform's early years, including the not-so-honorable moves of co-founder Mark Zuckerberg (played by Jesse Eisenberg). A critical and commercial success, the film was named one of the best films of 2010.

#6. The Irishman (2019)

- Director: Martin Scorsese - Stacker score: 94.5 - Metascore: 94 - IMDb user rating: 7.9 - Runtime: 209 minutes

Scorsese strikes again with "The Irishman," a gangster movie based on the book "I Heard You Paint Houses" about former mafia hitman Frank Sheeran. The film brings together some of the gangster genre's biggest heavyweights—Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, Joe Pesci, and Harvey Keitel—who earned a host of accolades for their collective work. The film was released on Netflix in late 2019.

#5. My Left Foot (1989)

- Director: Jim Sheridan - Stacker score: 96.2 - Metascore: 97 - IMDb user rating: 7.9 - Runtime: 103 minutes

Christy Brown was an Irishman born with cerebral palsy and was only able to control a single limb, his left foot. Despite his substantial physical disabilities, Brown learned how to paint and write with his foot, providing an unlikely outlet for his creativity. Daniel Day-Lewis brings the cantankerous artist to life in this Oscar-nominated film based on Brown's memoir.

#4. Goodfellas (1990)

- Director: Martin Scorsese - Stacker score: 96.7 - Metascore: 90 - IMDb user rating: 8.7 - Runtime: 146 minutes

The final Martin Scorsese picture on our list and one of the best-loved gangster films of all time, "Goodfellas" chronicles the true-life story of Henry Hill, a small-time mobster turned informant. Starring frequent Scorsese collaborator Rober De Niro as well as Ray Liotta and Joe Pesci, the movie is based on crime reporter Nicholas Pileggi's book "Wiseguy" and is widely considered one of the highest artistic peaks of Scorsese's career.

#3. 12 Years a Slave (2013)

- Director: Steve McQueen - Stacker score: 96.7 - Metascore: 96 - IMDb user rating: 8.1 - Runtime: 134 minutes

Solomon Northup was a New York-born free Black man who was kidnapped into slavery in 1841 and spent 12 years enslaved on plantations in Louisiana before being released. "12 Years a Slave," a realistic and violent depiction of Northup's experience, was based on his memoirs. The award-winning movie did what many before it failed to do: it demolished, once and for all, the idea that slavery was anything but a horrific, unjust, and unfair practice whose sins remain in America to this day.

#2. Schindler's List (1993)

- Director: Steven Spielberg - Stacker score: 100 - Metascore: 94 - IMDb user rating: 8.9 - Runtime: 195 minutes

A success on every level, Steven Spielberg's Holocaust masterpiece "Schindler's List" is, at its heart, two parallel character studies. On the one hand, there's Amon Goeth (played by Ralph Fiennes), a purely evil psychopath, and on the other Oskar Schindler (Liam Neeson), a greedy businessman turned unlikely humanitarian. Haunting and powerful, the film insists that goodness and truth can prevail, even in some of humanity's darkest moments.

#1. Lawrence of Arabia (1962)

- Director: David Lean - Stacker score: 100 - Metascore: 100 - IMDb user rating: 8.3 - Runtime: 228 minutes

The best biopic of all time? This 1962 epic chronicling the life of British Lieutenant T.E. Lawrence, who's tasked with serving as a liaison between Prince Faisal and the British government during their fight against the Turks. Earning 10 Oscar nominations, the movie is widely regarded as one of the most important and influential films in cinematic history . Still, there are always haters: Lawrence's brother A.W. reportedly hated the film so much that he refused to let David Lean use the title of T.E.'s memoir, " Seven Pillars of Wisdom. "

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11 Best Biopics of 2023, According to IMDb

W hile 2023 saw many of the industry's usual suspects churning out more and more franchise entries, be it Marvel's ' Guardians of the Galaxy: Volume 3' or Universal Studios ' Fast X' (the eleventh, yes, eleventh Fast and Furious film), diminishing box office return seems to be on trend when it comes to big-budget-franchise-films . Contrary to this, despite being released surrounded by behemoth projects with established and recognizable characters, the movies that dominated most online film discussion over 2023 were arguably Greta Gerwig's ' Barbie' , Christopher Nolan's ' Oppenheimer' and Sir Ridley Scott's ' Napoleon' .

So, what do these films have in common? Of course, none are from a series, meaning audiences could jump right in without the commitment required by lengthy film sagas. Also, two of the three films are biopics, showing that mainstream audiences still crave human stories that are grounded in reality, a revelation that, when paired with the overwhelming success of Oppenheimer alone, could lead to more and more high-budget biographical films showing up in cinemas almost immediately. Bearing all that in mind, let's take a look back at 2023's fantastic run of biopics, each one deserving of a spot on any film enthusiasts' watchlist.

'Napoleon' (2023)

Imdb rating: 6.6/10.

Joaquin Pheonix ( Joker ) charges head first into bloodied war and bizarre romantic entanglements in Napoleon , a divisive blockbuster event from Sir Ridley Scott that details the life of the titular French emperor, Napoléon Bonaparte, and the infamous relationship he shared with his wife, Josephine ( Vanessa Kirby ).

Shot in just 62 days, Scott's historical epic attempts to squeeze the many pivotal events of Bonaparte's life into a tight 2-and-a-half-hour runtime, showing his rise through the ranks during the French Revolution and his reign as Emperor of France, and while it does it well, there is a sense that time is being extremely compressed during Napoleon while it all plays out, an issue that looks to be fixed by a 4-hour-long directors' cut, rumored to be coming to Apple TV+ in 2024 .

Release Date 2023-11-22

Director Ridley Scott

Cast Joaquin Phoenix, Ludivine Sagnier, Ben Miles, Vanessa Kirby

Runtime 157

Main Genre Biopic

Genres Drama, Biopic

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'Priscilla' (2023)

Imdb rating: 6.8/10.

The iconic filmmaker behind the indie-cinema classic Lost in Translation , Sofia Coppola , presents Priscilla , an in-depth examination of one of rock 'n' roll history's longest enduring love stories, Elvis Presley's questionable courtship with Priscilla Ann Wagner . While Coppola's Lost in Translation begins with Scarlett Johansson's character Charlotte struggling to find herself amid a crumbling marriage, with Priscilla , Coppola flips the narrative, delivering the true story of a woman who grows and becomes herself, before leaving behind the marriage that had until then defined her.

Stylistically similar to Coppola's earlier work, The Virgin Suicides , Priscilla's dream-like qualities serve to boost the atmosphere of unease and isolation created by the film's subject-matter. Add to these stylistic elements the strikingly vulnerable performance delivered by Cailee Spaeny ( Pacific Rim: Uprising ) as Priscilla herself, and viewers will find a beautifully filmed biopic that respectfully challenges a titanic legacy without forcing an agenda, allowing audiences to decide for themselves how the film makes them feel.

When teenager Priscilla Beaulieu meets Elvis Presley at a party, the man who's already a meteoric rock 'n' roll superstar becomes someone entirely unexpected in private moments: a thrilling crush, an ally in loneliness, and a gentle best friend.

Release Date 2023-11-03

Director Sofia Coppola

Cast Ari Cohen, Jorja Cadence, Cailee Spaeny, Jacob Elordi

Runtime 113 minutes

Main Genre Drama

Genres Biography, Drama, Music

Writers Sofia Coppola

Production Company American Zoetrope, The Apartment

Watch on Apple TV

'Maestro' (2023)

A generation-spanning love story, ' Maestro' chronicles the lifelong relationship between conductor-composer, author and humanitarian Leonard Bernstein ( Bradley Cooper ) and the Broadway/Television actress Felicia Montealegre ( Carey Mulligan ).

Despite being directed, written and led by Bradley Cooper , whose hunger for an Oscar-win is on full display throughout Maestro, the cinematography is perhaps the film's greatest strength. Beautifully captured on film by Matthew Libatique ( Black Swan ), the camera work joyously transitions between color and black and white sequences, switching aspect ratios as it does, creating a dazzling cinematic experience.

This love story chronicles the lifelong relationship of conductor-composer Leonard Bernstein and actress Felicia Montealegre Cohn Bernstein.

Release Date 2023-12-20

Director Bradley Cooper

Cast Alexa Swinton, Michael Urie, Gideon Glick, Sarah Silverman, Bradley Cooper, Carey Mulligan, Miriam Shor, Maya Hawke, Matt Bomer

Runtime 129 minutes

Writers Josh Singer, Bradley Cooper

Producer Martin Scorsese, Bradley Cooper, Steven Spielberg, Fred Berner, Amy Durning, Kristie Macosko Krieger

Studio(s) Sikelia Productions, Amblin Entertainment

Distributor(s) Netflix

Watch On Netflix

The 10 Best Romance Movies of 2023, Ranked

'dumb money' (2023), imdb rating: 6.9/10.

Revealing the bizarre true story of the real people behind the GameStop short squeeze of 2021, an event that saw the video game retailers' stocks explode in value while making seemingly regular people into overnight millionaires. Directed by Craig Gillespie and hosting a star-studded cast including Paul Dano ( The Batman ), America Ferrera ( Barbie ), Nick Offerman ( The Last of Us ) and more, Dumb Money makes light of one of Wall Street's stranger moments.

Penned by writing team Lauren Schuker Blum and Rebecca Angelo , who previously worked together on Orange is the New Black , their screenplay is an adaptation of the Ben Mezrich book, The Antisocial Network, which gives a more detailed, beat-by-beat account of how the internet trolls took on Wall Street, nearly broguht it to its knees, and kickstarted a congressional investigation into the practices of so-called "retail brokers." While there was a lot of comedic moments in Dumb Money , it doesn't lose sight of the source material its covering, which makes it a true gem to watch.

Dumb Money is the ultimate David vs. Goliath tale, based on the insane true story of everyday people who flipped the script on Wall Street and got rich by turning GameStop (yes, the mall videogame store) into the world’s hottest company. In the middle of everything is regular guy Keith Gill (Paul Dano), who starts it all by sinking his life savings into the stock and posting about it. When his social posts start blowing up, so does his life and the lives of everyone following him. As a stock tip becomes a movement, everyone gets rich – until the billionaires fight back, and both sides find their worlds turned upside down. - Sony Pictures

Release Date 2023-10-06

Director Craig Gillespie

Cast David Faber, Talia Ryder, Larry Owens, Kate Burton, Dane DeHaan, Vincent D'Onofrio, Clancy Brown, Shailene Woodley, Olivia Thirlby, Seth Rogen, Sebastian Stan, Myhala Herrold, Anthony Ramos, Pete Davidson, Paul Dano, Nick Offerman, America Ferrera

Runtime 104 minutes

Main Genre Comedy

Genres Biography, Drama, Comedy

Writers Rebecca Angelo, Lauren Schuker Blum

Studio(s) Black Bear Pictures, Stage 6 Films, Columbia Pictures

Distributor(s) Sony Pictures Releasing

Watch On Apple TV

'Nyad' (2023)

Imdb rating: 7.1/10.

From the collaborative genius of Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin , the husband and wife film directors, producers and documentarians behind the Oscar Winning documentary Free Solo and The Rescue, comes the incredible true story of Diana Nyad, an athlete who, at the age of 60, commits to achieving a 110-mile open ocean swim from Cuba to Florida.

Earnestly portrayed by Annette Bening (American Beauty) , Diana faces many challenges leading up to her great swim. Whether it's dealing with the swim's practical accomplishments or showing the mentally draining ageist condescension that Diana faced almost daily, the film applies weight to each of the story's dramatic points, while mixing in just the right amount of Hollywood cheese, to make Nyad a rousing film worthy of the story it tells.

Nyad tells the remarkable true story of athlete Diana Nyad who, at the age of 60 and with the help of her best friend and coach, commits to achieving her life-long dream: a 110-mile open ocean swim from Cuba to Florida.

Director Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi, Jimmy Chin

Cast Anna Harriette Pittman, Rhys Ifans, Annette Bening, Jodie Foster

Rating PG-13

Runtime 121 minutes

Genres Biography, Drama, sport

Production Company Black Bear Pictures, Mad Chance, SPG3 Entertainment

'A Million Miles Away' (2023)

Imdb rating: 7.3/10.

Starring Michael Peña ( Ant-Man ) as José Hernández , a young aspiring astronaut whose dream to travel to space launches him from farm life and into the stars, A Million Miles Away is a hopeful biopic that tells the unlikely story of a person overcoming total social marginalization to achieve their almost impossible goal.

Joining Peña is a wellspring of talent that includes his fellow actors Julio Cesar Cedillo ( Sicario ) , Rosa Salazar ( Alita: Battle Angel ) and Veronica Falcón ( Ozark ) , and behind the camera, the critically acclaimed director/writer Alejandra Márquez Abella (The Good Girls) delivers her best work yet with a mature touch on a person who is willing to see his dream through. A Million Miles Away truly was one of the best biopics of 2023, and is a must-see for anyone looking to be inspired to chase their dreams in the New Year.

A Million Miles Away

Release Date 2023-09-15

Director Alejandra Mrquez Abella

Cast Julio Cesar Cedillo, Veronica Falcn, Michael Pena, Rosa Salazar

Genres Biography, Drama

Writers Alejandra Mrquez Abella, Bettina Gilois, Hernn Jimnez

Watch On Prime

The 10 Best Comedy Movies of 2023, Ranked

'tetris' (2023), imdb rating: 7.4/10.

Perhaps the most famous video game on the planet, the classic puzzle game Tetris got its own movie in 2023. Directed by Jon S. Baird ( Filth ), Tetris shares the unlikely story of Henk Rogers, a gaming entrepreneur whose race to secure the international distribution rights for the video game saw him brushing shoulders with the likes of Russian KGB agents and even the longstanding Nintendo president Hiroshi Yamauchi ( Togo Igawa ).

A standout among the current Hollywood product-biopic trend, which has seen the likes of films such as Air , Flamin' Hot​​​​​ ​​ and Blackberry all release within the same year, Tetris sports a brilliant cast, an engaging script and an inspired visual style, elements that culminate into a surprisingly entertaining and satisfying watch, even for people who are not fond of the game.

Release Date 2023-03-31

Director Jon S. Baird

Cast Toby Jones, Taron Egerton, Roger Allam, Ben Miles

Runtime 120 minutes

Main Genre Sci-Fi

Genres Sci-Fi, Adventure

Studio Threshold Entertainment

Watch On Apple TV+

'BlackBerry' (2023)

Directed by Matt Johnson (Nirvanna the Band the Show) , BlackBerry , like Tetris , is a docudrama that explores the rise (and fall) of a famous piece of technology in pop culture, this time the once-popular cell phone known as the BlackBerry. Co-written by Johnson and producer Matthew Miller , the screenplay is a loose adaptation of Jacquie McNish and Sean Silcoff's book Losing the Signal: The Untold Story Behind the Extraordinary Rise and Spectacular Fall of BlackBerry .

At first glimpse, the subject might seem uninteresting, but BlackBerry does tell more than a simple 'how did they do it?' story. It's a thrilling and moving exploration of the people behind one of the biggest technological booms the consumer market has ever seen, highlighting both the friendships and emotional rifts forged under the brutal, backbreaking pressure of the free market.

The story of the meteoric rise and catastrophic demise of the world's first smartphone.

Release Date 2023-03-12

Director Matt Johnson

Cast Matt Johnson, Jay Baruchel, Glenn Howerton, Cary Elwes

Runtime 119 minutes

Main Genre Biography

'Sound of Freedom' (2023)

Imdb rating: 7.7/10.

In what is probably the most controversial flick on this list, Sound of Freedom tackles the disturbing world of human trafficking, following the story of one man's eye-opening battle against it. Starring Jim Caviezel ( Passion of the Christ ) as Tim Ballard , the founder and CEO of 'Operation Underground Railroad', a nonprofit United States-based anti-sex trafficking organization, the film follows Ballard as he tries to save as many trafficking victims as possible.

Picking up after Ballard saves a small boy from traffickers, he learns that the boy's sister is still being held captive. Quitting his job and picking up the trail, Ballard's journey takes him deep into the Colombian jungle. Directed and co-written by Alejandro Monteverde ( Little Boy ) on a budget of only $14 Million, Sound of Freedom has been a meteoric success for Monteverde, grossing $248 Million at the global box office.

Sound of Freedom

Release Date 2023-07-04

Director Alejandro Monteverde

Cast Jos Ziga, Bill Camp, Mira Sorvino, Jim Caviezel

Runtime 135 minutes

Genres Biography, Drama, Action

Watch on Prime

'The Iron Claw' (2023)

Imdb rating: 8.1/10.

Joining the A24 funhouse, The Iron Claw , directed by Sean Durkin (The Nest) , is being called by critics one of the greatest sports movies of all time. Chronicling the rise and fall of the Von Erich Brothers , whose immense success at the forefront of the American professional wrestling industry ended after a series of personal tragedies known as the 'Von Erich Curse' ended their careers, The Iron Claw is equal parts a timeless American success story and a heartbreaking cautionary tale of success.

Starring performances of a lifetime from Zach Efron ( High School Musica l) , Jeremy Allen White ( The Bear ) and Harris Dickinson (Triangle of Sadness) as the brothers Kevin , Kerry and David Von Erich , who all underwent incredible physical transformations for their roles, and it showed in their stellar performance. The Iron Claw is a must-watch, and in just is short run, is already considered one of the best films of 2023.

The Iron Claw

The true story of the inseparable Von Erich brothers, who made history in the intensely competitive world of professional wrestling in the early 1980s. Through tragedy and triumph, under the shadow of their domineering father and coach, the brothers seek larger-than-life immortality on the biggest stage in sports.

Release Date 2023-12-22

Director Sean Durkin

Cast Maura Tierney, Zac Efron, Harris Dickinson, Jeremy Allen White

Runtime 130 minutes

Writers Sean Durkin

Production Company A24, Access Entertainment, Access Industries

'Oppenheimer' (2023)

Imdb rating: 8.4/10.

Detailing the life of J. Robert Oppenheimer (Cillian Murphy) , the brilliant but equally troubled mind behind the first nuclear bombs, Christopher Nolan's epic biography Oppenheimer took the world by storm when it was released in June alongside Barbie , quickly becoming one of the years most successful blockbusters. Assembling a collection of the very best talent in the industry, from the critically acclaimed director of photography, Hoyte Van Hoytema ( Interstellar , Nope ) to a star-studded cast of A-listers, Oppenheimer might just be Nolan's defining achievement.

Spending the majority of its extensive runtime dedicated to the physicists' time as the director of the Manhatten Project and the legal proceedings that followed, in which Oppenheimer battled against AEC chairman Lewis Strauss (Robert Downey Jr.) to retain his governmental security clearances, the film is a harrowing thriller that deals with destructive forces with the potential to kill millions, and the moral and ethical struggles of those who are responsible for their creation.


The story of American scientist, J. Robert Oppenheimer, and his role in the development of the atomic bomb.

Release Date 2023-07-21

Director Christopher Nolan

Cast Cillian Murphy, Matt Damon, Robert Downey Jr.

Runtime 181

Genres Biography, Drama, War

Writers Martin J. Sherwin, Christopher Nolan, Kai Bird

NEXT: The 30 Best Movie Performances of 2023

11 Best Biopics of 2023, According to IMDb

The Cinemaholic

20 Best Biopic Movies of All Time

Amal Singh of 20 Best Biopic Movies of All Time

Hollywood and other film industries have always been fascinated with the lives of famous people. That’s why we have so many biopics made right since the beginning of cinema. Not all of them are great, but we certainly have seen a fair share of really good biopic movies. From Gandhi to Zuckerberg, Hollywood has tried its hand on making biopics on people from all strata of life. Now, let’s look at the list of top biopic movies of all time. You can watch several of these best biopic movies on Netflix, Hulu, or Amazon Prime.

20. Nixon (1995)

NIXON, Anthony Hopkins, 1995

Hopkins had quite a run after he won the Academy Awards for ‘The Silence of the Lambs’ (1991), but the boldest work of his career was as President Richard Nixon in this outstanding bio from Oliver Stone . As one of the most polarizing figures of the seventies, Nixon was a true statesman, but a flawed and paranoid man, doomed as a world leader. He captures the wounded soul of the disgraced President in every way. Looking nothing like him, he instead captures his essence and speech pattern and becomes Nixon before our very eyes.

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19. Bugsy (1991)

biography movies imdb

Warren Beatty was always an interesting actor, but with his work here as murderous gangster Benjamin Siegel, he proved he was a great one. With movie star good looks, Siegel landed in Hollywood and quickly took over all gangland related activities and when visiting the desert, he had a vision of what became Las Vegas. Obsessed with his Flamingo Hotel in the desert, he failed to see his girlfriend was stealing from the mob, which brought Siegel down. Beatty is terrifying in his rages, deluded in his belief he can kill Mussolini, yet gentle and kind with his family and friend Meyer Lansky.

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18. Chaplin (1992)

biography movies imdb

A brilliant actor ready for the performance of his lifetime, stuck with a weak script, a cowardly director not willing to show his subject warts and all, Robert Downey Jr. still gave one of the great performances of all time, beautifully capturing Chaplin and his artistry. Sadly neither the director nor script took advantage of Downey being so far into character; the actor was gone, Chaplin remained. With an edgy actor such as Downey, why explore the more controversial aspects of his life? They had an actor ready to cut loose and they failed him.

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17. Downfall (2005)

biography movies imdb

Is it possible to humanize Hitler, possibly the most hated and evil man to ever exist? Bruno Ganz did that very thing in the superb German film ‘Downfall’, which explores the last days Hitler was alive in his bunker, the Soviets not far from the heart of the city. Hands shaking, frail, obviously drugged heavily, he knows the end is near and what is coming; he knows what the reaction will be to his Death Camps. Often gentle and kind with those around him, other time he flies into a rage when his orders are not followed. In the end, the monster was all too human, just a man. An astounding, brave performance.

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16. Lincoln (2012)

biography movies imdb

The moment we laid eyes on him in the opening moments of the film, and he spoke in that surprising high reedy voice, audiences felt they were encountering Abraham Lincoln, possibly the greatest American who ever lived. Daniel Day-Lewis poured over books, found descriptions of his voice, his gait, the manner in which he spoke and the deep melancholy he carried with him and brought it with him to his performance. His co-stars claimed they never met Day-Lewis until the film’s premiere; they knew only President Lincoln. This profoundly fine performance won the actor his third Academy Awards for Best Actor.

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15. The Aviator (2004)

biography movies imdb

As the young Howard Hughes during his Hollywood years, before the madness set in, Leonardo DiCaprio is truly outstanding. Blessed with a brilliant, inquisitive mind, he is always looking to the skies, even in his first film, ‘Hells Angels’ (1930), which he re-shot after the advent of sound. Fascinated with aviation, he built planes, making them bigger and faster, crashing one of them in downtown LA, forever damaging himself. It is a bold, outstanding performance that beautifully explores a troubled mind. The genuine fear in his eyes when he has one of his spells is truly frightening because he is never really sure if he can snap out of it.

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14. The Last King of Scotland (2006)

biography movies imdb

In portraying the purely evil yet charismatic Idi Amin Dada, actor Forest Whitaker gave a performance for the ages, winning every single award available to him that year. As self appointed President, actually dictator of Uganda, he takes a young Scottish doctor under his wing and it is through that man’s eyes we see the monster appear. Whitaker is brilliant, seething with anger and contempt for those who defy him, believing himself to be a God. Terrifying.

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13. Patton (1970)

biography movies imdb

As one of the greatest warriors in the history of the United States military, General George S. Patton did as he pleased often defying his superiors’ orders. George C. Scott is magnificent as Patton, one of the screen’s greatest performances and refused the Oscar he won for Best Actor. That iconic image that opens the film — Scott dwarfed by a massive flag — once seen can never be forgotten.

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12. My Left Foot (1989)

biography movies imdb

On the rise as an actor when he made this lovely, gritty film about Irish artist/writer Cristy Brown, afflicted with cerebral palsy since birth, Day-Lewis won the Academy Award and several other awards in announcing himself as a major new acting force. His eyes ablaze with intellect and purpose; his body betraying him with constant shaking, twitching, everything out of control except his left foot. The actor brings us the fierce mind that was trapped in that wretched body. Despite his affliction, he was gifted, horny and a heavy drinker. Day-Lewis is a miracle in the film.

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11. The Wolf of Wall Street (2013)

biography movies imdb

As stock swindler Jordan Belfort, who became obscenely wealthy before the FBI brought him down, Leonardo DiCaprio gives a brilliant performance – the best of his career. The young actor brings a furious energy to the performance and brash confidence, moving through the film like a young rock star. Whether stoned on drugs , smashed out of his mind, or arguing with his gorgeous wife, the actor is a revelation and force of nature. He is electrifying from beginning to end, always in motion, scheming, descending slowly into his own hell.

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10. The Social Network


Made at a time when Facebook had reached meteoric height’s, ‘The Social Network’ works as a powerful commentary on modern times and feels utterly fresh, even after six years. It deserves a place on every such list because of the treatment by David Fincher . Led by powerful performances from Jesse Eisenberg and Andrew Garfield , it is a deeply personal tale which works on so many levels, and is a study on the nature of friendship , ambition and power.

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Helmed by Bennett Miller (who also directed ‘Foxcatcher’), ‘Capote’ chronicles the life of Truman Capote during the period when he was writing his non-fiction novel, ‘In Cold Blood’. Superbly constructed, the film feels bleak and sublime at the same time, as it tries to convey the horrors of the killings. But the movie stands out chiefly because of the honest and riveting performance by Philip Seymour Hoffman , which earned him an Academy Award for Best Actor. It is sad that we’ve lost a truly great artist.

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8. Malcolm X


At a run time of 200 minutes, ‘Malcolm X’ is a long movie. But it never seems long, thanks to a phenomenal performance by Denzel Washington , and nuanced direction by Spike Lee . The film dramatizes chief events of the life of African American activist Malcolm X. The film received much skepticism and criticism even before it actually hit the screen, mainly because of the sensitive nature of the subject. But it received overwhelming critical acclaim upon release. Denzel Washington was nominated for Best Actor in a Leading Role for his standout performance, but lost out to Al Pacino , which many think was unfair on the Academy’s part.

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7. The Pianist


Roman Polanski is a director known for his technical prowess, edgy direction and excellence in handling the noir genre of cinema. But in ‘The Pianist’ , the visionary director takes his skills and gives us a devastating biographical drama. ‘The Pianist’ is the moving life-story of Władysław Szpilman, a Polish pianist and composer, portrayed by Adrien Brody , who loses his family during the Holocaust. Polanski paints a bleak, harrowing landscape – drawing from his own experiences of the war – and gives us a terrifying, yet human tale of hope and survival .

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Richard Attenborough’s enduring masterpiece ‘Gandhi’ is still fresh in the hearts of the millions of Indians who watched it at the time when it was released. Made on a very large-scale and featuring actors from both Hollywood and Bollywood, this biographical drama feels fiercely authentic. The direction is quite traditional, and is exactly what a biopic of this scale needed; after all, it was about an ordinary man who did extraordinary things. Sir Ben Kingsley’s commanding presence as Mahatma Gandhi is one of the pioneering examples of biopic performances.

5. The Elephant Man


David Lynch is a master of his craft, and is a tough director to watch. His body of work – original and largely cerebral – proves that beyond a shadow of doubt. But in ‘The Elephant Man’, the visionary director outdoes himself and shows us an intensely moving tale about a disfigured man trying to find his place in society. It is based on the life of Joseph Marrick, a man suffering from severe deformity. The film depicts his life in a Victorian freak show and his relation with Dr. Frederick Treves, who tends to him later, and provides him shelter. Technically brilliant, and at times quite bleak – considering the nature of the subject – the film is especially noted for the make-up done on John Hurt for him to look the part. It is historically quite significant because the Academy was criticized for failing to recognize the efforts gone in the make-up process, and only after this film was the category for Best Make-up introduced.

Read More: Best Overrated Movies of All Time

4. Raging Bull


There are boxing movies and then there is ‘Raging Bull’ . This Martin Scorsese gem is the biographical account of the boxer Jake LaMotta, his rise to fame and his personal struggles. Scorcese pours his heart out in this picture, which is so perfectly crafted that it works both as a sports movie , and as a tragic drama. Robert De Niro gave an explosive and riveting performance as Jake LaMotta, rightfully taking home the Best Actor Oscar for this role. Shot entirely in Black and White , the movie came out in the same year as ‘The Elephant Man’, competing for the Best Picture award. Unfortunately, neither of the two won the award, which went to ‘Ordinary People’.

Read More: Biggest Box Office Disasters of All Time

3. Goodfellas


Hailed by many as the second best gangster movie ever, (first being ‘The Godfather’ ) ‘Goodfellas’ is a riveting crime drama based on a non fictional book Wiseguy, chronicling the rise and fall Henry Hill, a crime family associate. Plumbing the obscene depths of crime, ‘Goodfellas’ is an enduring tale about loyalty, betrayal and the corrupting nature of power. Martin Scorsese delivers perfection in this ageless film, which boasts of marvelous performances by Ray Liotta, Robert De Niro, and the swashbuckling Joe Pesci (who took home the Best Actor in a Supporting Role Oscar for his performance.)

Read More: Best Heist Movies of All Time

2. Schindler’s List

Schindler's List,

I won’t say much about ‘Schindler’s List’ here. Widely regarded as one of the best pictures in the history of cinema, ‘Schindler’s List’ is Steven Spielberg’s masterpiece, and is truly a work of art. With the Second World war as the backdrop, with the Nazi terror achieving terrible heights, ‘Schindler’s List’ is a moving tale about one man’s change of heart, and how he becomes a messiah. But, oh, it still doesn’t occupy the top spot on this list. Wonder why? Well, scroll down to find out which film holds that honor.

Read More: Best Visually Stunning Movies of All Time

1. Lawrence of Arabia


A film so grand and epic in scope that it commands multiple viewings. Really, get a Blu-ray and watch it on a big screen TV. Made in 1962, ‘Lawrence of Arabia’ is David Lean’s magnum opus. It is a riveting saga about the life of British archaeologist T.E Lawrence and the role he played during the Arab revolt against the Ottoman Empire. Everything about this movie is beautiful in a terrific, haunting way, crafted by a film-maker at the peak of his powers. The melodious score by Maurice Jarre, the authentic, breathtaking cinematography by F.A Young (the desert never looked so mesmerizing ), and a powerful performance by the-then newcomer Peter O’ Toole , make this movie one of the greatest films of all time . Its influence can still be felt in modern biopics.

Read More: Best Screenwriters of All Time


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The 15 Best Biography Movies About Actors and Actresses

biography movies imdb

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Biography movies (also known as biopics) come in all kinds of flavors, but most of them tend to be focused on musicians, politicians, soldiers, and geniuses. What about actors?

Even though Hollywood loves making movies about itself, the majority of them are fictional. If you dig around a bit, however, you'll find several great biography films about real actors and actresses.

Here are my picks for the best biographical movies that give a peek into the Hollywood industry, where famous actors toil behind the scenes with work, love, heartbreak, family, and addiction.

15. Mommie Dearest (1981)

biography movies imdb

Directed by Frank Perry

Starring Faye Dunaway, Diana Scarwid, Steve Forrest

Biography, Drama (2h 9m)

6.6 on IMDb — 48% on RT

A quick Google search might show you that Mommie Dearest is considered one of the worst films ever made, but hear us out! For this movie to be labeled so extremely is proof of its lasting impact.

In fact, Mommie Dearest is so bad that it's good—if you watch it as a comedy rather than a drama—even if lead actress Faye Dunaway still regrets taking the part, haunted by the soul of Joan Crawford who's "just hanging around... as if she couldn't rest."

While Mommie Dearest doesn't show Crawford's whole life, it does show the part where she becomes an abusive, controlling mother. And while her daughter Christiana has said that Joan deserved to go to jail, even she found Frank Perry's depiction over the top...

14. Blonde (2022)

biography movies imdb

Directed by Andrew Dominik

Starring Ana de Armas, Adrien Brody, Bobby Cannavale

Drama, History (2h 47m)

5.5 on IMDb — 42% on RT

Everybody was excited for the release of Blonde . The crisp black-and white shots, the vintage square ratio, and the illustrious Ana de Armas promised a stylish biopic of the legendary Marilyn Monroe.

Although director Andrew Dominik didn't quite meet expectations, Blonde is still a refreshingly unconventional biography that's held together by visual prowess and keen acting from Armas.

Critics were mainly divided on Blonde 's fictionalization of true events. Although it certainly kept things interesting, some found the filled-in gaps of Monroe's memoirs to be exploitative.

biography movies imdb

13. The Life and Death of Peter Sellers (2004)

biography movies imdb

Directed by Stephen Hopkins

Starring Geoffrey Rush, Charlize Theron, Emily Watson

Biography, Comedy, Drama (2h 2m)

6.9 on IMDb — 69% on RT

Peter Sellers was an English actor known for his caricature style of comedy, often embodying more than one role at a time (which he did in Stanley Kubrick's Dr. Strangelove ).

Sellers is most famous for portraying the clumsy French detective in The Pink Panther movies. His specific techniques made him a master of comedic timing, parody, and improvisation, although we won't condone his use of brownface in The Party .

Years later, Geoffrey Rush embodied Peter Sellers in Stephen Hopkins's TV movie The Life and Death of Peter Sellers . It might not capture the entirety of Peter Sellers's creative genius, but it does give us a curious look behind closed doors.

12. Mahanati (2018)

biography movies imdb

Directed by Nag Ashwin

Starring Keerthy Suresh, Dulquer Salmaan, Samantha Ruth Prabhu

Biography, Drama (2h 57m)

8.4 on IMDb — 100% on RT

There's more to Indian cinema than just Bollywood. Mahanati is much closer to the narrative arcs we see in Western biopics: a rise to fame, a complicated love life, then alcoholism, illness, bankruptcy, and fall.

However, Nag Ashwin doesn't present us with just another rise-and-fall story. Instead of reducing actress Savitri to her struggles, she's celebrated and enlivened through popping colors and an acclaimed central performance from Keerthy Suresh.

Mahanati was a dazzling success, not just in India but across the globe (even if the runtime is a tad lengthy). The film isn't perfect, but the good parts were great enough to earn it multiple awards.

11. Life (2015)

biography movies imdb

Directed by Anton Corbijn

Starring Robert Pattinson, Dane DeHaan, Joel Edgerton

Biography, Drama (1h 51m)

6.0 on IMDb — 64% on RT

Director Anton Corbijn offers a small snippet into the life of James Dean, who was basically the male equivalent of Marilyn Monroe in the 1950s.

The first James Dean biography movie on our list, Life centers on Dennis Stock (Robert Pattinson), a photographer for LIFE Magazine. We get to see how his iconic photoshoot of James Dean came about, with Dean himself played by Dane DeHaan.

Like those actual photos—which are cleverly woven into the film— Life is an artistic sliver of Dean's life, with poetic narrations and a bang-on performance by DeHaan as the sensitive, soft-spoken, chain-smoking rebel without a cause.

biography movies imdb

10. My Week With Marilyn (2011)

biography movies imdb

Directed by Simon Curtis

Starring Michelle Williams, Eddie Redmayne, Kenneth Branagh

Biography, Drama (1h 39m)

6.9 on IMDb — 83% on RT

My Week With Marilyn depicts one segment of Marilyn Monroe's glamorous life: the time when she was visiting London with her famous playwright husband Arthur Miller.

She was there to film The Prince and the Showgirl but kept forgetting her lines and leaving the set. She couldn't connect to her character or her husband, so she confided in fresh-faced Oxford graduate Colin—one of many men who got to spend a week with Marilyn Monroe.

Michelle Williams and Eddie Redmayne star as the unexpected couple, taking in the British sights alongside Kenneth Branagh, Judi Dench, Emma Watson, and Dominic Cooper.

9. Elvis (2022)

biography movies imdb

Directed by Baz Luhrmann

Starring Tom Hanks, Austin Butler, Olivia DeJonge

Biography, Drama, Music (2h 39m)

7.3 on IMDb — 77% on RT

Elvis Presley was obviously more of a musician than an actor, but he starred in more films than pretty much anyone else on this list. After all, he was first and foremost a performer (which is why he was taken in by circus huckster Colonel Tom Parker).

After breaking racial barriers and rocketing to stardom, Elvis naturally transitioned to Hollywood and churned out an impressive 31 movies that started out as fun but gradually ended up soulless.

Austin Butler embodies the King of Rock in Baz Luhrmann's biopic that's even more glittery than Presley's outfits. We see the light fade from his eyes as he fake-surfs through various movie productions, pill-popping his career away to a hotel prison sentence.

biography movies imdb

8. Frances (1982)

biography movies imdb

Directed by Graeme Clifford

Starring Jessica Lange, Sam Shepard, Kim Stanley

Biography, Drama, Romance (2h 20m)

7.2 on IMDb — 67% on RT

Frances Farmer was one of those celebrities who was more famous for her private life than her professional one. The American actress appeared in a string of movies during the 1930s, but her hospitalization was the main thing to reach headlines.

Jessica Lange gives a driven performance as Frances, who was a controversial figure since childhood. As a kid, she wrote anti-God essays. As an adult, she refused to play the Hollywood game.

Frances cheats, drinks, refuses to wear makeup on screen, and is eventually committed to Kimball Sanitarium after her abusive mother becomes her legal guardian.

biography movies imdb

7. Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story (1993)

biography movies imdb

Directed by Rob Cohen

Starring Jason Scott Lee, Lauren Holly, Robert Wagner

Action, Biography, Drama (2h)

7.0 on IMDb — 73% on RT

Bruce Lee is the champion of martial arts movies. The actor/filmmaker moved from British Hong Kong to Seattle at 19 years old to open his own martial arts school before entering the film industry.

Bruce Lee was nicknamed Dragon (or "Little Dragon" when he was young) since he was born in the hour and year of the Chinese zodiac Dragon. His dual identity is explored in Rob Cohen's biography, and thankfully Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story goes beyond skin-deep.

Jason Scott Lee stars as the chiseled karate icon, delving into his Hollywood career and his relationship with Linda Lee Cadwell, all of it flourished with elements of mysticism.

biography movies imdb

6. Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool (2017)

biography movies imdb

Directed by Paul McGuigan

Starring Annette Bening, Jamie Bell, Vanessa Redgrave

Biography, Drama, Romance (1h 45m)

6.7 on IMDb — 81% on RT

"We never expected Gloria Grahame in our kitchen, necking a bacon butty, asking for tommy sauce." Absolutely true! We wouldn't expect the Oscar-winning starlet of Hollywood's Golden Age to be staying in a humdrum area of rainy Liverpool.

Whether or not she really did scarf down bacon butties at the local boozer, we can't be sure. However, we do know that Grahame (played by Annette Bening) spent a lot of her final years in Liverpool.

Initially there for work, she strikes up an unexpected relationship with an amateur actor 30 years younger (Jamie Bell). In Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool , director Paul McGuigan shows us how age is just a number.

5. Man on the Moon (1999)

biography movies imdb

Directed by Miloš Forman

Starring Jim Carrey, Danny DeVito, Paul Giamatti

Biography, Comedy, Drama (1h 58m)

7.4 on IMDb — 64% on RT

Andy Kaufman was a very different kind of actor. The "Inter-Gender Wrestling Champion" purposefully went out of his way to annoy people. Indeed, there were no Oscar ceremonies for him—but there were quite a few wrestling matches (with women only).

In Man on the Moon , Andy Kaufman is played by Jim Carrey, who famously stayed in character and went around annoying everyone on set. A whole documentary— Jim & Andy: The Great Beyond (2017)—was even made about Carrey's behavior.

Andy Kaufman was initially a stand-up comedian who made people laugh by being terrible. His Tony Clifton character was particularly grating, and he later featured in the sitcom Taxi with Danny DeVito (who plays Kaufman's manager in Man on the Moon .)

4. Stan & Ollie (2018)

biography movies imdb

Directed by Jon S. Baird

Starring Steve Coogan, John C. Reilly, Shirley Henderson

Biography, Comedy, Drama (1h 38m)

7.2 on IMDb — 92% on RT

Laurel and Hardy were an infamous comedy duo of the silent film era, mixing with the likes of Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton. Their slapstick gags were beloved around the world, with Stan Laurel playing the clumsy man-child and Oliver Hardy the mean bully.

By the 1950s, this type of cinema was dwindling. The pair were starting to age and—having spent so much time together—their friendship even started taking a toll. Clutching at straws, they embarked on a less-than-easy UK musical hall tour.

Steve Coogan and John C. Reilly flesh out the men in Stan & Ollie , moving with humor and humility. Jon S. Baird's biography doesn't try to be too heavy. It's simply sincere.

biography movies imdb

3. James Dean (2001)

biography movies imdb

Directed by Mark Rydell

Starring James Franco, Michael Moriarty, Valentina Cervi

Biography, Drama (2h)

7.1 on IMDb — 93% on RT

James Franco's depiction of another actor named James is what effectively put him on the map. Mimicking such a specific personality as James Dean? A tightwalk situation that, thankfully, worked out.

Dean's elusive and cool exterior occasionally breaks away to the chaos and anger underneath in Mark Rydell's biopic. Nobody believed Dean could make it big, but he proves them all wrong.

Dean's own indifferent father likely fueled his emotive performances in East of Eden (1955) and Rebel Without a Cause (1955), which Franco recreates seamlessly here in James Dean .

2. Judy (2019)

biography movies imdb

Directed by Rupert Goold

Starring Renée Zellweger, Jessie Buckley, Finn Wittrock

Biography, Drama, Music (1h 58m)

6.8 on IMDb — 82% on RT

Actress Judy Garland starred in hits like A Star Is Born (1954) and Meet Me in St. Louis (1944), but she remains most famous for playing Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz (1939).

Most people already know that Judy Garland had a hard life, but few of us really understood how bad it was until we watched Judy . Heaps of horror stories have since come out about the production of The Wizard of Oz , and that's where all the trouble began for Garland.

For starters, MGM forcing her to take drugs as a teenager is likely what propelled Garland into early-life substance abuse.

While Garland's troubles are at the center of Rupert Goold's drama, Judy switches between the start and end of Garland's life (played by an unrecognizable Renée Zellweger).

biography movies imdb

1. Chaplin (1992)

biography movies imdb

Directed by Richard Attenborough

Starring Robert Downey Jr., Dan Aykroyd, Geraldine Chaplin

Biography, Comedy, Drama (2h 23m)

7.5 on IMDb — 60% on RT

Charlie Chaplin is a name everyone's heard of. Even if you took the title off Chaplin 's poster, you'd know what this film was about! The silhouette of a bowler-hatted tramp is recognizable anywhere.

Robert Downey Jr. was nominated for an Oscar for his honorable portrayal of this timeless figure. Looking eerily similar to the real Chaplin, Downey takes us on his literal rags-to-riches journey. (Chaplin went from homelessless to being one of the richest men in the world.)

Chaplin's character of The Tramp was revolutionary for many reasons—mainly for blending pathos and humor during the Keystone days—but he wasn't always so innocent in real life.

biography movies imdb

biography movies imdb

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The 140+ Best Biography Movies

Ranker Film

Biographical films explore the fascinating lives of historical figures and cultural icons. The best biography movies offer viewers a captivating look into the lives of these people, skillfully recreating stories that have shaped history and left a lasting impact on the world. With unforgettable narratives to explore, you will find these films showcase exceptional storytelling, nuanced performances, and unparalleled cinematic vision. 

The best biography movies offer not just boring history, but gripping, groundbreaking, and original narratives. For instance, films like Catch Me If You Can follow the high-stakes exploits of a charming con artist, blending thrilling action with compelling character development. Schindler's List, on the other hand, tackles the harrowing subject of the Holocaust, masterfully capturing the heroic efforts of one man to save lives during a dark time in history. Then there's A Beautiful Mind, which delves into the complex life of renowned mathematician John Nash, showcasing the challenges and triumphs associated with his brilliance. These films are but a few examples of the best biographical movies that excellently capture the essence of their subjects and the genre. 

The lasting impact of these movies demonstrate how well they resonate with audiences, transcending time and cultural boundaries. Biographical movies not only accurately depict the lives of their subjects, but they also elevate the art of storytelling by blending truth with cinematic dramar. Through these exceptional films, viewers gain fresh perspectives on the world, history, and the individuals who have shaped it, marking these biographical movies as the very best in their field. 

Catch Me If You Can

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Schindler's List

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New Biography Movies Coming Out This Year and in The Future

Stay ahead of the cinematic curve with our comprehensive list of upcoming movies, offering the best online schedule for every major new movie coming out this year and in the future! From riveting dramas to exhilarating superhero movies, our article is your ultimate guide to the latest and most anticipated films hitting Hollywood.

If you are looking for a list of upcoming TV shows releasing this month and in the future, click here!

2023 Biography Movies

2024 biography movies.

Our list was curated using data from sources such as IMDB , Wikipedia and Fandango .

IMDb Charts

Most popular movies.

Dakota Johnson in Madame Web (2024)

Deadpool & Wolverine

Mark Ruffalo and Emma Stone in Poor Things (2023)

Poor Things

Wicked (2024)

Anyone But You

Javier Bardem, Josh Brolin, Rebecca Ferguson, Dave Bautista, Austin Butler, Timothée Chalamet, Zendaya, and Florence Pugh in Dune: Part Two (2024)

Dune: Part Two

Chip in Argylle (2024)

The Beekeeper

Camila Mendes and Archie Renaux in Upgraded (2024)

The Iron Claw

Cillian Murphy in Oppenheimer (2023)


Kingsley Ben-Adir in Bob Marley: One Love (2024)

Bob Marley: One Love

Richard E. Grant, Rosamund Pike, Richie Cotterell, Barry Keoghan, Archie Madekwe, and Jacob Elordi in Saltburn (2023)

The Marvels

Pedro Pascal, Ebon Moss-Bachrach, Vanessa Kirby, and Joseph Quinn in The Fantastic Four (2025)

The Fantastic Four

Javier Bardem, Josh Brolin, Rebecca Ferguson, Jason Momoa, Sharon Duncan-Brewster, Oscar Isaac, Timothée Chalamet, and Zendaya in Dune: Part One (2021)

Dune: Part One

Cole Sprouse and Kathryn Newton in Lisa Frankenstein (2024)

Lisa Frankenstein

Owen Teague in Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes (2024)

Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes

Millie Bobby Brown in Damsel (2024)

The Holdovers

Erika Alexander, Tracee Ellis Ross, Jeffrey Wright, Sterling K. Brown, and Issa Rae in American Fiction (2023)

American Fiction

The Zone of Interest (2023)

The Zone of Interest

Shahid Kapoor and Kriti Sanon in Teri Baaton Mein Aisa Uljha Jiya (2024)

Teri Baaton Mein Aisa Uljha Jiya

Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire (2024)

Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire

Tom Ellis, Damon Wayans Jr., Augustus Prew, Joel Courtney, Gina Rodriguez, and Liza Koshy in Players (2024)

Killers of the Flower Moon

Sandra Hüller, Milo Machado-Graner, and Samuel Theis in Anatomy of a Fall (2023)

Anatomy of a Fall

Lupita Nyong'o in A Quiet Place: Day One (2024)

A Quiet Place: Day One

Jamie Bell, Andrew Scott, Carter John Grout, Claire Foy, and Paul Mescal in All of Us Strangers (2023)

All of Us Strangers

Enzo Vogrincic in Society of the Snow (2023)

Society of the Snow

Martin Freeman and Jenna Ortega in Miller's Girl (2024)

Miller's Girl

Mia Goth in X (2022)

Joker: Folie à Deux

Teo Yoo and Greta Lee in Past Lives (2023)

Mission: Impossible - Dead Reckoning Part One

Ryan Gosling and Margot Robbie in Barbie (2023)

Lover, Stalker, Killer

Angela Bassett, Golda Rosheuvel, Paul Walter Hauser, Jacob Tremblay, Aparna Nancherla, and Natasia Demetriou in Orion and the Dark (2024)

Orion and the Dark

Jason Momoa and Patrick Wilson in Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom (2023)

Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom

Jennifer Lopez in This Is Me... Now (2024)

This Is Me... Now

Russell Crowe, Milo Ventimiglia, Luke Hemsworth, Ricky Whittle, and Liam Hemsworth in Land of Bad (2024)

Land of Bad

Katy O'Brian in Love Lies Bleeding (2024)

Love Lies Bleeding

Tim Meadows, Tina Fey, Christopher Briney, Reneé Rapp, Jaquel Spivey, Angourie Rice, Bebe Wood, Avantika, and Auli'i Cravalho in Mean Girls (2024)

The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes

John David Washington and Madeleine Yuna Voyles in The Creator (2023)

The Creator

12th Fail (2023)

How to Have Sex

Jake Gyllenhaal in Road House (2024)

Leave the World Behind

Hrithik Roshan, Anil Kapoor, Akshay Oberoi, Deepika Padukone, and Karan Singh Grover in Fighter (2024)

The Fall Guy

Joaquin Phoenix in Napoleon (2023)

American Assassin

Bradley Cooper and Carey Mulligan in Maestro (2023)

Valentine's Day

Michael Mann, Penélope Cruz, and Adam Driver in Ferrari (2023)

Drive-Away Dolls

Josh Brolin, Ryan Reynolds, and Zazie Beetz in Deadpool 2 (2018)

They Called Him Mostly Harmless

Matthew McConaughey in Interstellar (2014)


Brad Pitt, Leonardo DiCaprio, Al Pacino, Quentin Tarantino, Kurt Russell, Dakota Fanning, Damon Herriman, Timothy Olyphant, Harley Quinn Smith, Kansas Bowling, Madisen Beaty, Mike Moh, Josephine Valentina Clark, Sydney Sweeney, Michaela Sprague, Margot Robbie, Kayla Radomski, Ryan Ramirez, Margaret Qualley, and Julia Butters in Once Upon a Time... in Hollywood (2019)

Once Upon a Time... in Hollywood

Godzilla Minus One (2023)

Godzilla Minus One

Anthony Hopkins, Djimon Hounsou, Bae Doona, Michiel Huisman, Charlie Hunnam, Sofia Boutella, and Staz Nair in Rebel Moon - Part One: A Child of Fire (2023)

Rebel Moon - Part One: A Child of Fire

Nikki Amuka-Bird, Simon Russell Beale, Mark Rylance, Johnny Flynn, Zoey Deutch, Dylan O'Brien, Michael Addo, Alan Mehdizadeh, and Chiedu Agborh in The Outfit (2022)

The Shawshank Redemption

Andrew Barth Feldman and Jennifer Lawrence in No Hard Feelings (2023)

No Hard Feelings

Koji Yakusho in Perfect Days (2023)

Perfect Days

Vincent D'Onofrio, Kevin Hart, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Úrsula Corberó, Billy Magnussen, Yun Jee Kim, and Viveik Kalra in Lift (2024)

Don't Worry Darling

Havana Rose Liu, Marshawn Lynch, Miles Fowler, Nicholas Galitzine, Rachel Sennott, Kaia Gerber, Ayo Edebiri, and Ruby Cruz in Bottoms (2023)

Gladiator 2

Beetlejuice Beetlejuice (2024)

Beetlejuice Beetlejuice

Sean Astin, Neal McDonough, Kristoffer Polaha, Elizabeth Tabish, Paras Patel, Rose Reid, and Jordan Alexandra in The Shift (2023)

The Godfather

Taraji P. Henson, Fantasia Barrino, and Danielle Brooks in The Color Purple (2023)

The Color Purple

IF (2024)

Top Gun: Maverick

Steve Carell and Pierre Coffin in Despicable Me 4 (2024)

Despicable Me 4

Frankie Corio and Paul Mescal in Aftersun (2022)

May December

Dev Patel in Monkey Man (2024)

Dream Scenario

Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire (2024)

Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire

You have rated, more to explore, top box office (us), imdb top 250 movies, top rated english movies, most popular tv shows, top 250 tv shows, lowest rated movies, most popular celebs, top rated movies by genre, recently viewed.

Screen Rant

The 10 best biopics about comedians, ranked according to imdb.

Comedian's life stories are often as interesting as their material, but which 10 comedian bio-pics got the highest scores on IMDb?

Comedians are some of the most fascinating people in show business, and their life stories are usually as interesting as their hilarious material. Sometimes drawing from their life experience, comedians can find the funny side of any situation and biopics help audiences see behind the humor.

RELATED: The Best Biopics Of 2021, Ranked According To IMDb

Whether they're covering silent movie legends like  Chaplin  or TV icons like  Being the Ricardos , comedian biopics are as various as they are hilarious. Though there are many classics within the sub-genre, some garnered much higher scores on IMDb .

The Buster Keaton Story (1957) - 5.1

A man and woman pose for a photo from The Buster Keaton Story

While most biopics strive for historical accuracy, some opt instead to present the audience with a fun story, and leave the truth behind.  The Buster Keaton Story  attempts to recollect the life of famed silent movie director Buster Keaton. Following him from his early days in vaudeville to the demise of silent filmmaking, the film paints a funny picture of a hilarious man.

The film has enough going for it to keep it entertaining, if not entirely true to life. Donald O'Conner portrays Keaton and does an honorable job recapturing the many mannerisms that the silent performer was known for. Unfortunately, the film was not well received, and it did little to rehabilitate Keaton's then fallen star.

Jo Jo Dancer, Your Life Is Calling (1986) - 6.3

Richard Pryor looks on in confusion from Jo Jo Dancer

Occasionally, a biopic can be so ambitious that it leaves its audience behind and fails to deliver what the viewer was expecting from it. Starring Richard Pryor as a facsimile of himself,  Jo Jo Dancer, Your Life Is Calling is the story of a comedian who remembers his life through an out of body experience after an accident.

Pulling from Pryor's own life story,  Jo Jo Dancer  is an unbelievably raw portrait of the beloved stand up icon. While audiences were expecting laughs, the film instead delivered drama and heartbreak revolving around his real life issues. Similar to some of Pryor's best films , he is brilliant in the lead role, but audiences were expecting more humor from the noted humorist.

Being The Ricardos (2021) - 6.6

Lucille Ball smiling softly in Being the RIcardos

Known for being so much more than a comedian, the importance of Lucile Ball's legacy cannot be overstated.  Being the Ricardos  attempts to recapture some of Lucy's essence in film form, and tells a portrait of her life. The film is mostly framed through her relationship with husband Desi Arnaz, and chronicles their rise in Hollywood.

By limiting the scope of the film to a specific moment in their lives, the film rightly narrows its focus. With an iconic figure like Lucille Ball, it would have been tempting to attempt to capture her whole story, but that would have done her a disservice. The focus on a specifically challenging moment allows the filmmaker to hint at the much larger story that lies beneath the surface.

The Late Shift (1996) - 6.8

David Letterman talks to his agent in The Late Shift

One of the most desirable jobs for a comedian is to host a late night TV show, and  The Late Shift  chronicled a legendary change in television history. The TV movie told the story of the feud between comedians David Letterman and Jay Leno, as they both fought for the soon to be vacated hosting spot on The Tonight Show .

The behind-the-scenes battle that took place once Johnny Carson retired, was the stuff of legend and  The Late Shift  did an excellent job of making it real. Usually, films and TV shows gloss over the politicking that goes into show business, but  Late Shift  made it the principle focus for maximum effect.

The Life And Death Of Peter Sellers (2004) - 6.9

Peter Sellers steps up to a microphone from The Life and Death of Peter Sellers

Performers are an enigmatic lot, and comedians are often the most complicated of them all.  The Life and Death of Peter  Sellers  attempted to tell the story of beloved actor Peter Sellers, and his complicated personal life that was marred by self-doubt, and crumbling relationships.

RELATED: 10 Hit Movies That Became TV Shows

Many performers use comedy as a mask to hide their real feelings, and Peter Sellers was a prime example . Though beloved for his many funny film roles, not many knew that Sellers struggled with his own identity in the wake of his success. Though very broad in its scope, the film still managed to capture the essence of the man and showed an interesting arc in his life.

The Three Stooges (2000) - 6.9

The Three Stooges perform in a sketch from The Three Stooges

While most comedy is very much a product of its time, the work of The Three Stooges has never failed to remain hilarious with each passing year. The TV movie  The Three Stooges is a dramatic look at the lives of the beloved jokesters, as seen from the perspective of their de facto leader, Moe Howard.

Though not without its laughs, the film is a somewhat dour portrait of the life and times of the iconic trio. By letting fans in on some of the behind-the-scenes facts about the Stooges , the movie shows that it wasn't always fun and games. However, despite the dark outlook, the film is still a fascinating account of the lives of the men themselves.

Stan & Ollie (2018) - 7.2

Laurel and Hardy pose on stage from Stan And Ollie

While most comedians become famous because of their work on screen, occasionally an act returns to the stage in the twilight of their careers.  Stan & Ollie   is the story of silent movie stars Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy as they go out on one last vaudeville tour through post-war Great Britain.

The film brilliantly uses its characters and setting to make commentary about the nature of show business, and still manages to be true to its source as well. Showing that he can play completely different types of roles, John C. Reilly breathes life into the complicated comedic figure . With equal parts humor and drama,  Stan & Ollie  was a touching tribute to two silent film legends.

Man On The Moon (1999) - 7.4

Andy Kaufman sings from Man on the Moon

When a beloved figure passes away too soon, it often leaves a hole in many viewer's hearts and they lament for all of the things that could have been.  Man on the Moon  attempted to resurrect the late comedian Andy Kaufman and tell his brief life story from its meteoric rise to its sudden end.

RELATED: 10 Great Biopics In Which The Subject Makes A Cameo Appearance

Though mostly known for Jim Carrey's method acting based performance, the film is also a funny and touching portrait of a life. Some viewers have disagreed with the film's assessment of Kaufman as a person but it still managed to capture a bit of his strange charm. Anchored by great performances and direction, the film shines as a unique 1990s gem.

Chaplin (1992) - 7.5

Charlie looks on in Chaplin

Told in retrospect, the lives of some of the screen's biggest icons is the perfect fodder for a Hollywood blockbuster.  Chaplin  tells the life story of its title character, director and actor Charlie Chaplin . Starting from his humble beginnings to his rise to stardom, the film's story is recounted by an elderly version of Chaplin who is collecting his memoirs.

With a dynamic personality like Robert Downey Jr. starring as Chaplin, the film wasn't short on charisma. Chaplin's life story was such that it didn't take a lot of Hollywood magic to make it interesting, and there was a lot of material to work with. Though its scale was large,  Chaplin  still managed to capture the famous figure, without sacrificing his humanity.

Lenny (1974) - 7.6

Lenny Bruce points while on stage from Lenny

Few comedians pushed the boundaries of the art of standup quite like Lenny Bruce, and the icon paid the price by bearing the brunt of the government's fight for modesty.  Lenny  tells the life story of the outspoken comic and his fight for freedom of speech in the face of potential criminal charges.

Made less than a decade after Bruce's untimely death, the film exists to show just how far things had come as a result of Lenny's work. Though not everyone's cup of tea, Bruce paved the way for comedians that followed in his footsteps. For his part, Dustin Hoffman excels at delivering the acerbic wit of the comedian, and makes his performance genuine without needing to resort to impression. The film's beautiful black-and-white photography also helps to ground it in its time period.

NEXT: 10 Best Rock Musician Biopics Of All Time (According To Metacritic)


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