Lucky 13 Film Club: The Duality of Meryl Streep


The L13FC involves analyzing an aspect of the film industry. A co-host joins me on the thirteenth of the month to lead the discussion. Attract new readership as I will link your blog. Don’t be shy; email me at, and let’s shape an idea together. Too busy next month? That’s okay. Co-host in the spring or the summer. There is no pressure and it’s a lot of fun. 

Today is my birthday, and I thank you for stopping by to share it with me.

Cindy’s thoughts: 

Have you ever noticed Meryl Streep‘s characters are either feminine or masculine? Do you sigh with incredulity because Streep was nominated again for a role? I have. Not everything she does is Oscar-worthy, but she has been consistently fantastic for decades. No one can replicate her accents, her subtleties, or her range. She is our modern-day Katharine Hepburn or Bette Davis. What do we know about Streep’s choices? She is a feminist via her characters. They show us that women are capable of anything and are strong enough to survive in the harshest of circumstances. Since high school, I have followed her career, growing up and old with her. I’ve seen the majority of her films, and I have noticed Meryl is binary. Her feminine choices are fragile, manipulative, vulnerable, sexy, soft and confused. Her masculine roles are durable, forthright, strong, unsexy, hard and determined. She is yin or yang. She is female or male depending on the role.



Check out this clip, and you’ll see what I mean. When Meryl plays the man, the character not only defeats but devours those around her. A few of her male roles show the worst attributes (greed and egomania) a man can have. It makes me wonder what kind of feminism is this? Women who break glass ceilings are just as corrupt as the worst of men? What of the other extreme, that is, the woman who manipulates by her sexuality? I find myself scratching my head.

I prefer Meryl Streep best when she’s chosen characters with both the yin and yang. The female who is strong yet sensitive. The female who adapts to her hardships and survives without resorting to greed or power. I am a fan of Meryl Streep’s acting but have grown weary of her as the symbol of womanhood and Hollywood.

I find her earlier roles more satisfying; the mix is apparent and her characters are subtle and graceful. Streep’s melodramatic, manic roles are off-putting. Which are her best? Sophie’s Choice, Out of Africa, Silkwood, and The French Lieutenant’s Woman.   

What I WISH would happen is that a great script would fall in the laps of Daniel Day-Lewis and Meryl Streep simultaneously. I would love to see those two greats in a film together. 

131 thoughts on “Lucky 13 Film Club: The Duality of Meryl Streep

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  1. Have a Happy Birthday! Statistically, there must be a reason that her Woman-films are the better known ones, and the Man-films are less well known, irrespective of her abilities as an actor. I suspect a profiling of the audiences of her films might explain this.

    1. I was impressed with Streep in The River Wild. The physical demands of the role and the beautiful scenery was right up my alley. I liked Kevin Bacon and John C. Riley, too. Sophie’s Choice. Still the finest acting job, IMO. The languages, the complexity, Kevin Kline!

    1. Hi Derrick. No, it does drag in the middle and I found the parallel stories from present to past a little much. I would rather just stick in the period time. I thought Streep’s character interesting and mysterious. What a femme fatale! Jeremy Irons, I never get tired of him.

  2. Whenever I watch her in a film, I am usually sidetracked by her similarity in attitude and general appearance to the British politician, Margaret Thatcher. She made this flesh of course, with her perfect portrayal in ‘The Iron lady’.

    I have seen most of her films, and generally enjoyed them for reasons other than the fact that she was in them.
    For example, in ‘Out of Africa’, I was driven crazy by her affected Danish accent. “I hed a ferm in Aaafrikka” but loved the film for the scenery. I enjoyed ‘Death Becomes Her’, and thought she was very good good. But I found myself watching Goldie Hawn and Isabella Rossellini. In ‘Silkwood’, (one of my favourite performances from her), despite her great role, I was concentrating on Cher.

    So, what do I like? (I hear you yell at me)

    I actually prefer her to be an American in a film, and to play a contemporary role. ‘The Devil Wears Prada’, ‘Postcards From The Edge’, ‘Rendition’, ‘The Deer Hunter, and so on. I know what you are saying about the masculine/feminine aspect of her acting style, depending on the role, but that doesn’t concern me as much as her somewhat elevated status as an actress that has led to her being compared to many of the greats.
    That I don’t really see at all. Then again, she is a million times better than Julia Roberts!

    As always, Cindy, you give us a very interesting article, with lots to debate and to think about.
    Have a wonderful time in the German restaurant, and a very Happy Birthday.
    (But don’t forget my guest post…)

    Best wishes, (From a very snowy Beetley) Pete.

    1. Welcome, Pete. That’s an interesting thought. You like her best when she acts American. 🙂 I guess I prefer her more foreign roles because I admire accents (they are to me!) and it gives an actor an added dimension when done right. She has an angelic voice; her voice work as say, the fairy in A.I., or as the wife in Wes Anderson’s Fox movie, she sounds great. Now a days, she seems to explore her singing voice. Can’t say I’m too much a fan. But I agree with you regarding Julia Roberts….
      The guest post. I haven’t forgotten. I am just very busy. Hopefully this weekend or so. I get it to you, friend. 🙂

      1. Funny how you like her accents, and that’s where she falls down for me. Oh well, if we all liked the same things, life would be dull! No rush for the guest post, I was only teasing. You enjoy a ‘birthday weekend’, I would.

      2. Agree Cindy!! I love it when she plays with accents!! I remember Elizabeth Taylor doing those in the 50’s & 60’s, to perfection; be it a southern drawl to sophisticated European accents!! It’s actually fun!!
        And, am not a great fan of Meryl Streep singing either, a la Mamma Mia!! Though I liked her energy in the movie!!

      1. It’s very ‘topical’ too, Lloyd, with them both dying so recently. I recall it was something of an ‘experience’ at the time, to imagine real stars behaving like that. Much the same way as I felt about ‘Mommie Dearest’. (1981)
        Regards, Pete.

        1. I’ll come sit with you Pete. The highlight for me was as Cindy said the locations and Pierce in his disco suit and when Meryl sang The Winner Takes it All. I turned to my wife and said “Is there nothing this woman can’t do?”. But look cast your mind back to Meryl a few years back. That really well renowned actress slipping quietly into middle age, getting nominations for the latest accent filled role she did in a movie nobody saw becoming more and more irrelevant and often confused with Glenn Close. Sure there was Adaptation there and Madison County here but do you remember One True Thing or Music of the Heart. She received two Oscar nominations for them. Cast to the side playing Mum characters in Prime, The Manchurian Candidate and Lemony Snickett. I’m no fan of Mamma Mia but I am a huge fan of its success and what it and Prada did for Streep’s second career not as an exalted actress but as a 100% bona fide movie star. Not bad when you’re a woman past forty in Hollywood.

          1. 😮 next thing I know you’ll be saying you don’t rate The BeeGees. Good day to you Sir. 🙂 But in all seriousness if you don’t like Abba that would be a long movie. I like Abba and didn’t care for Mamma Mia.

          2. I did enjoy ‘Saturday Night Fever’. As long as I don’t have to look at them, the Bee Gees are OK to listen to. But watching them requires a strong stomach.

          3. I agree Lloyd, Pete & Cindy!! Mamma Mia, isn’t among my favourite musicals!! It’s still pretty good, thanks to the soundtrack. But, minus the music, the movie, would be NOTHING!!
            And Lloyd, I love Abba & The Bee-gees myself!! I love lot of music (art, literature & cinema), of the 60’s and 70’s!!
            And Pete, I really enjoyed Saturday Night Fever myself, but again, it’s more thanks to the music!! But, yes, Saturday Night Fever is definitely a zillion times better than Mamma Mia!!

  3. Happy Birthday, Cindy.
    [I must admit she is a very fine actress, but I don’t care to hear her political views. The fact that she can pretend to be someone she’s not while reading words written by someone else only makes her equivalent to a politician.] IMO

  4. Well this fascinating because how do we define gender in a modern age? Are they personality traits, emotions, roles or societal expectations? I mean Karen Blixen is unmistakably a woman to me but also one of the most bad ass characters I’ve ever known constantly following her own paths and rebelling against gender conformity of the day. Meryl in Kramer vs Kramer is also unmistakably a woman but who is judged because she abandons her child and that is seen as not being maternal. Meryl as man includes Julie and Julia, an absolute favourite of mine. Julia Child was an OSS officer during the war, unusually tall for her era and not a traditional beauty queen. I can’t think of a more wonderful woman I’ve seen on screen in the past ten years offhand. What is gender in the end? For me Meryl and the characters she plays are undeniably women, some strong, some smart, some shallow, some scared, some brave and some confounded. The richness of all women, all the different women that can be in any one woman alone is so richly evoked by the these and so many other performances from her. This should be a fascinating chat even though I have to admit I don’t know what I could offer.

    1. Whatta ya mean, nothing to offer?! You said a mouthful. I’m very glad you did. First, Julie and Julia was the last best role I’ve seen Meryl play. I love Julia’s history–she was a spy! So there she is in a man’s world as chef and officer, but boy, did she have the love of her man. Gender is a complicated topic. Trying to understand it in the past is a fun task. Today we are becoming more andragenous than ever. I dare say in fifty years, it will be difficult to find “traditional” males and females. I see it as a teacher. Girls are called by guy names and dress and have haircuts like them. Boys have long hair, wear makeup and tight fitting clothes. I’m not making a judgement call, I’m just privy to the current generation, today. And I’m certainly not saying Meryl has something to do with this.
      Okay, back to her roles. Karen Blixen is a great woman; intelligent, strong–I love the book and the film.

      1. Yes I’m afraid I just can’t help myself. I guess I’m just declaring I have no expertise and am interested in what you have to say about gender. Yeah every generation seems to push down these boundaries. Gender is a complicated topic for sure. How refreshing is it to see a marriage in later year depicted so wonderfully and positively on the big screen by such two great actors in Julie and Julia.

        1. Yes. The societal pendulum swings from left to right. As long as it stays somewhat in the middle, I think that’s healthy. It’s when it swings too far left or too far right that we loose touch with our past, our traditions, our history.

          1. Ha! We are becoming more androgynous!!
            I agree boundaries between male and female are getting less defined; I hope in a good way. For example; I am guy, who likes being a guy, a male. But I don’t fall into the stereotypical male box either. I am not a man’s man, not overtly masculine, either!! But that doesn’t make me a woman either!! I am not much of sports person, more of artiste, with an ‘e’ !! I am an open minded individual; a guy who also happens to be a Feminist! After all real Feminism is about equal rights, not overpowering men. And I believe in Equality to all. I don’t believe in discrimination. I don’t believe in the archaic concept of, Men are from Mars and Woman are Venus, or all that nonsense. I treat everyone with respect, men, women, children; I only judge the judgemental; and if people disrespect me, no matter how old or young, I have no respect for such people. I try my best to be a nice person, and happen to be a pretty decent guy!! So nobody has the right to discriminate me, as a man; at the same time, nobody has the right to call me a woman, either!!
            I have got a lot of insults, in my life, for being my own person, and not bending to others wishes!! I have a brain of my own!! I think all these idiotic perceptions of men should be like this, and women should be like that, is BULL!!
            And Streep is one bold person who has managed to break these boundaries!! She is her own person!!

          2. I enjoy your enthusiasm with all your explanation points. 🙂 Cultural morays about gender have been changing a lot in the last thirty years. It brings pain and relief to stretch out and away and breathe your own way regardless of acceptance. I’m curious in fifty years, after the traditionalists have passed away, what kind of androgynous world will it look like. I’m afraid I’m more traditional the older I age. I like men and I like being a woman.

  5. There is no doubt that Merly has played broader characters in recent years. The one two punch of The Devil Wears Prada and Mamma Mia and their resulting box office will do that to you. These broader performances for me are not the problem. See Julie and Julia. That movie is wonderfully comforting look at family and marriage. Fuck the poor kid Julie, not even Amy Adams can save that for me but there are moments etched in my mind from Tucci and Streep. Yes it’s all very loud. Jane Lynch and her laughing like two kids, the upbeat humourous music as she tries out different classes, that over the top Julia Child voice but Julia Child was like that. Look for the subtlety. Look for Tucci’s back bowed and voice quiet sitting on a bed as he’s being called back to Washington. Look to Julia Child then. That moment when Julia says she is so happy her sister is having a baby. Or the wedding where the two couples dance together and the men reach out their hands and shake and then the two women pat the other’s shoulder. That’s family, that’s marriage, that’s life. If the Meryl as men films seem poorer in contrast to some it’s not just the broader less subtle performances from Meryl it is the films are statistically weaker. Into the Woods, The Manchurian Candidate, Suffragette, Thatcher can’t measure up to the The Deer Hunter, Kramer Vs. Kramer even if Meryl is not a big part of those films. Silkwood, Sophie’s Choice, Out of Africa. Even the best of the latter Bridges of Madison County, The Devil Wears Prada, Doubt, The Hours are going to have trouble beating those. Still for me personally the Julia bits of Julie and Julia are my favourite. As films I do love Bridges of Madison County, Out of Africa and sorry The Devil Wears Prada. I only saw Out of Africa a couple of years ago and I was blown that 30 years ago Meryl played a complete and whole woman allowed to write her own destiny, forward thinking with her sexual relationships and undeniably brave and tough. One final thought, It’s Complicated had a cracking trailer but I was very disappointed with it. Hope Springs though I really dug and think it allowed us all to see Tommy Lee Jones a little differently. Meryl who was still fresh as in the public’s mind as Samantha from Prada reminded us she can do it as well with that film.

    1. It’s hefty scene-chewing. I show the film in class and after seeing it multiple times, the version is growing on me. Landsbury was better, colder, but Streep sure played her well. I liked Denzel Washington in the role very much. The whole cast, especially Liev Schreiber, performed well. It engaged me throughout.

  6. Happy birthday, Cindy! I love your idea for this post. I’m writing this off the cuff on the bus into work, so forgive me if I sound half-baked or inelegant.

    Since I was a kid, I’ve always recognized a feminist sentiment in Streep’s work, even when I didn’t really get what feminism is. You make a good point about her feminine/masculine characters (though I can think of exceptions, where the female is actually strong: an earlier post mentioned Thatcher, Julia Childs, even her character in ‘The Devil Wears Prada’).

    I must say, though, while she brings her own statement to everything she does, she always struck me as motivated by the challenge of transforming into each role. I could be wrong, but the first time I recall her playing a male was the rabbi in “Angels in America.” I love that since then, she’s gone for roles that require a physical chsnge. She reminds me of Annie Lennox or Cindy Sherman, two women I love whose work in other media is also clearly motivated by challenge yet still has a feminist ideal to it. I don’t love everything Streep does, but she puts her own stamp on it.

    I went off topic a bit, lol. Have a great birthday!

    1. I’m so glad you stopped by to comment! You sound fine to me. 😉 Another actress I love who transcends gender is Tilda Swinton. She’s probably top 3 favorite working actresses today. Anyway, you are right about the Streep stamp. When I see the movie poster or trailer, I can usually guess if I’ll like her in it or not. The roles where she’s extreme usually don’t touch me like her quieter, sensitive roles.

      1. IThanks, and I agree about Ms. Streep’s quieter chatacters! I like Tilda Swinton a lot, but her last few projects haven’t piqued my curiosity. Isn’t she in a Marvel film now? Meh, not my thing. I’ll keep an eye out for her usual, more cerebral stuff– that’s what I like about her.

  7. I think you might’ve opened up something else a bit with you becoming “weary” of her off screen Hollywood symbolism. Not to deviate too much from your theme here… her remarks at the Golden Globe I thought were passionate and compelling given the current mood of the nation in general. As the camera panned the audience I couldn’t help but notice the widespread look on people’s faces, hanging on to her words as if it were a last attempt to avoid the swirl down into an abyss. While I accepted what she said with strong empathy for the moment it open up this idea over the years of celebrities accepting awards having to use the moment of fame and camera attention to millions of watchers to express some political opinion or involvement in a favorite charity.

    In my opinion, for what that’s worth, all these televised award ceremonies are for public consumption.. and the public consumes these things because we all love celebrities and celebrity gossip and their richness and trappings of wealth. We love them because of the characters they play and their talents in depicting an imaginary or real interpretation of the world around us. So, do we need to see them “get real” at an event that has little to do about reality? For me this goes way back.. to the Native American.. dunno know her name years ago at an Oscar event… something-feather.. who accepted an award for Marlon Brando and she went on about indian struggles. Brando, or anyone else for that matter, is popular enough to have an outside press conference instead.

    1. You bring up a good point Doug. Here she was accepting a lifetime achievement award for the body of her work. She never once mentioned her family, her work or anybody who had a profound effect on her development. I remember being at a Pearl Jam concert once where they started talking about something in the news and a guy in front of me just muttered to his mate that they should just stick to music. You’re right you want to voice an opinion call a press conference bring it up in various interviews is it really appropriate at an awards show? Knowing that some will automatically dismiss or resent it though means her actions required some form of boldness and conviction. For me personally I feel all artists think and feel and live in this world and have opinions about it as much as anyone. Maybe more so, I mean we got make a buck while they’re swaning around Bel Air. They are not necessarily more informed or should be taken more seriously but if they want to say something I say go ahead. Beyond being an awards show, she was appropriately addressing her peers and community at a time that she felt she should in addition to making use of a platform. I have no problem with that anymore than Dennis Franz, Clint Eastwood and Bruce Willis making statements of changing values and ineffective governments. Regardless of it being an appropriate venue or whether one agrees with the content or ideology of the speech I thought it was well constructed and delivered. Easily the most interesting and riveting part of the telecast. Wiig and Carrell presenting, the cold open with Fallon, Gosling’s acceptance speech and a bit on first jobs the movie stars had were the only other things of interest. In my humble opinion I’ll take more such moments at awards shows, not less.

      1. How did miss this, lloyd? So sorry for the delayed response. I think it is better to keep to the nature of the event. I never much liked sermonizing. It was a lack-luster affair. I will be watching the Oscars and hope it is entertaining.

        1. I enjoyed the speech Cindy but to each to their own. Certainly I hope the Oscars are entertaining. You may appreciate this trip down memory lane. Susan Sarandon and Tim Robbins ‘sermonized’ at an Oscar ceremony in the early 1990s. When my hero David Letterman hosted disastrously in 1996 he did do this nonetheless. He introduced Sarandon and Robbins with “Our next presenters are Susan Sarandon and Tim Robbins. Pay attention I’m sure they’re pissed off about something.”. To their credit Robbins stepped up to the mike and jokingly started with “Thanks Dave. Actually as it so happens if we could get just have your attention for a minute there is something we’d like to say. Susan.” Sarandon paused for comic effect and then started reading off the nominees.

          1. Yes I liked Emma’s dress and it was on theme for the film. Ryan may have been stiff but he thanked his wife for supporting doing the role while taking care of their bub, pregnant with their second and looking after her ailing brother who had cancer. He dedicated the award to her brother who has since past. That’s a man right there.

          2. Wow, that doesn’t sound stiff or boring at all! I really like Ryan as an actor. He reminds me of Steve McQueen in that “silence says a lot”. Ryan has had some interesting, versatile roles! Bring them on! Especially looking forward to BladeRunner 2049.

          3. Well Harrison Ford was the man to be when I was boy coming of age. Some got Bogart, Wayne, Eastwood, McQueen. I got Harrison Ford and Mel Gibson. I rest easy knowing for some it will be Ryan Gosling. A talented actor, a great looking kid and after that speech a class act all the way.

    2. Hi Doug, and welcome back. I’ll be more blunt about the Golden Globe award ceremony. I think it’s not the platform for a political or religious tirade. Richard Gere did it years back with Buddhism, I remember. An awards ceremony is a gala, fun-filled affair; information and opinions about politics and religion should be gleaned elsewhere. I suppose it’s the choice factor. I don’t like people telling me how I should think and what I should believe. I sure don’t like it rammed down my throat. It’s not in the least way persuasive. As far as celebrities and their lives, and our lure to them, I like to focus on the artistry of films and the artist as actor. I appreciate the time and energy actors give to their characters. They have to be very smart to pull off the human psyche. The ones that make it look easy get my respect. Meryl is in that category.

  8. First of all, Happy Birthday! As for Streep, this is a fascinating prism to look at her film thru…another example of the feminine side is “Defending Your Life”, when she plays the “perfect woman” who effortlessly attracts all men – not using sexuality, but just her “feminine charms.” The role calls for her to do nothing more than fall in love with someone for no apparent reason, except of course because he wrote the screenplay and directed as well! Oh, and the film’s terrific, so I am only looking at her performance through your filter….great article!

    1. Hi John. Now there’s a film of hers that slipped by. I somehow missed it and then forgot all about it. So glad you bring it to the discussion table. 😉 I think it’s interesting that scripts, good ones, seem few and far between. She has managed to find enough decent scripts to sustain her for forty years.

      1. Yes, and she refuses to stay in a single genre: she does comedy as much as drama, and even did the action film “The River Wild” – now there’s a male-focused persona!

        1. I love that movie. It resonates on a number of levels. I felt sorry for the husband who was wimpy (David Strathairm). I liked the Bacon’s performance as Wade. It was thrilling and satisfying movie.

  9. Happy Birthday Cindy!! Many happy returns my friend, upwards and onwards!

    Interesting topic here about miss Streep. I haven’t seen enough of her work to be able to do such a deep analysis like you did here. But as for this question ‘Do you sigh with incredulity because Streep was nominated again for a role?’ Yep, in fact I did that when I saw she got another nom for ‘Florence Foster Jenkins.’

    As for your above comment in light of her impassioned speech at the Golden Globes… “I think it’s not the platform for a political or religious tirade…An awards ceremony is a gala, fun-filled affair; information and opinions about politics and religion should be gleaned elsewhere.” I tend to think that way too, even if I did agree with some of the things she said. There is a time and place for everything, and there’s power in not always communicating everything we think and feel.

      1. Oh yeah I enjoyed Devil Wears Prada. Not sure what my fave Meryl’s role, maybe that one. I also remember Kramer vs Kramer being one of her most memorable earlier roles.

  10. Hope you have a great birthday Cindy! Many happy returns.

    I love this breakdown of Streep’s career. I haven’t ever stopped to consider the male-female dynamic to her work but that’s a keen observation. I think I am also kind of getting over “the prominence of Meryl Streep.” To be blunt, it’s almost annoying at this point hearing her name up for YET ANOTHER OSCAR. That it almost feels like a foregone conclusion she’ll be up for another this year (but she’ll have to get past Ruth Negga, which I don’t see her doing) says everything about her dominance, and perhaps also the inability of the Academy and critical circles to think beyond the popularity contest. This all sounds like i don’t like the actor at all but I do. I really think she’s wonderful. She has been consistently fantastic for decades, as you say, and that’s the pure objective truth. But once in a while it’d be nice to see a nom list that doesn’t include her name. Surely this year there’ll be something else that can trump her Florence Foster Jenkins. Surely there are other rising talent deserving of the spotlight. If there isn’t, it’s kind of like saying Meryl Streep is the only working actress in Hollywood right now. No one else matters.

  11. This is a strange thing for me because I see strong similarities between Meryl Streep and Katherine Hepburn. Both are brilliant Actresses – who are not beauties.

    But, for me, there’s a big difference between them. Meryl has never had the Star Power and Charisma of Hepburn – (whatever that stuff is) (But very few do). I can watch Hepburn and she’s so great that I can’t tell that she’s Acting. She so good she’s just bloody mesmerizing.

    I don’t get that with Meryl.

    And in several of her films I can see her Acting. Do you know what I mean? Watch Meryl Act … isn’t she great??? At times something just doesn’t click for me there.

    Yet she’s had an extraordinary career. In Hollywood it’s a rare and amazing achievement to carve a successful career based upon …. ACTING!!! (of all things) (SHOCK!!)) without great looks.

    So I have to salute her.

    But … can I flip the channel now?

    1. Welcome, JC! You bring up a fine point about the ambivalence one has for her. It’s a miracle for a female actor to have the longevity and success for reinvention as Streep has. While her awards pile up and she’s climbed up to Hepburn’s stratosphere, I do understand what you mean about becoming the character and acting. Streep has made just over 50 films and been nominated 19 times for an Oscar. Of the nineteen I’d say a dozen deserved it. She has surpassed Hepburn’s performances a few times; such long careers you will find a dose of stinkers and mediocrity, it’s inevitable. But if you concentrate on the great performances, Streep can give as good as Hepburn. I wonder if Streep will act into her 70s-90s? How difficult it must be to find great scripts to sustain you your whole life?

      1. That’s the other story isn’t? GETTING WORK. And work that you WANT to do. Few Actors/Actresses can chose. They better take what they are offered – or can find. And when your Star falls we’ve seen many take questionable roles in ‘not so good’ movies. But I’m sure that Meryl has a few bucks in her pantry by now. Just whether she wants to keep going – or not.

  12. Happy Birthday, Cindy! Lovely article on Meryl Streep. She was brilliant in Sophie’s Choice and in practically every role she has tackled. Truly the great actress of our time!!!

  13. Wow, this post has been really successful for you Cindy. Which isn’t surprising because you always find a great topic for us all to talk about. And you reminded me, I need to watch more Streep movies.

  14. Belated birthday greetings and salutations for stirring such mischief with your provovative post. I say mischief because your opening premise contains the seeds of its own firestorm and it is one I do not accept. In my view, one of Streep’s unique talents is her ability to fluidly transcend stereotypical gender representations. Rather than remain locked within a gender dichotemy, she traverses a gender continuum and has done so in all the roles that are recoverable in my cranium’s RAM. That is how she enriches her characterisations: she treats gender as a palimpsest or a set of gender layers through which she passes at will. I dare not speculate on how other people’s gender self-identity is constructed, but I’m a man, a woman, a child and an old person, all at the same time. I’m layered internatlly with multi-sexuality, but behaviorally have evolved stereotyped preferences. If I were a great actor, I would be capable of depicting the traits, mannerisms, feelings, thoughts, and behaviours of all layers embedded within. And thats why Meryle Streep is one of the finest actors of our generation.

    1. Great response! You have a nice way of disagreeing with me. 😉 Yes, take Julie & Julia for instance. Julia was an astute, ambitious woman leading as a chef in a man’s world and not your typical bombshell. Julia had a heightened sensitivity and hearty sexual relationship with her adoring husband. Streep blended male/female characteristics with ease. I like your explanation of the layers we humans possess. I’ll take dynamic characters over the static ones any day. Meryl Streep certainly enjoys complicated characters. So, since you enjoy Streep, I’m curious which roles you admire most? Thank you, CineMuse, for stopping by today.

      1. In Aussie colloquial we would say “you are worth bottling” Cindy. Your riposte is measuredly marvelous. There really is no Streep role that I have not admired; perhaps the film they built around her might have had issues, but not Meryl. For raw power-acting that traverses the gender repetoire, The Queen stands out in my memory. Lovely to engage with such a mischevous mind. Your straw-man premise was a birthday masterstroke.

        1. Oh, cool! Sometimes the topic of the month hits a nerve. I’m thrilled. Next month should be interesting if Jordan’s ribs heal and he can make it as guest host. Of course, you know I’d love it if you would co-host again, Lloyd. I have a great idea — motion in films. We should talk about it. 😉

          1. That would be great Cindy. I would like to promise to do one with you this year. But I’m not sure how the next 6 months is going to play out and would to commit to it down the line. Sounds like an interesting topic.

      1. She did fairly well at it. Like in America we have several accents, the difference would probably not be recognized in the US. With the huge migrations coming in since the 1950’s even the classic Ozzie accent will change over time.

        1. I am sure you are right. Whether accents or native languages, migrations cause groups to either hold onto them or reject them with indifference or with passion. We end up with a gray soup.

  15. Meryl is truly one of, if not the, greatest of female performers. We are privileged to be of a generation where she is still working consistently. I agree that not all of her performances warrant a nomination but even in lesser films or roles, she is able to deliver quality every time.

    Day-Lewis and Streep you say? That would be movie gold. Throw in a little DeNiro supporting role and that would make my day. 😉

  16. Some more two cents from me, while art is subjective and I don’t really have an issue with any of many Oscar nominations I would say that her win for Thatcher in my humble opinion was undeserved. I’m pleased she’s joined the rarefied air of three time Oscar winners and I suspect that the Academy was merely deciding it was time to give it to her again for all her great performances over the years but I wouldn’t have given it to her for Thatcher. Just saying. 🙂

  17. First of all, a very Belated Happy Birthday!! May, Year 2017, be a great year, full of film critiques!! 😀
    From one Bold Woman, about another!!
    Although, I have not grown weary of Streep’s performances; I do agree, I love the past roles more. But then again, modern movies seem to explore characters roles less, compared to past movies. So I guess Meryl Streep isn’t completely to blame. As you said, hopefully a good script will fall into her hands.
    I too loved her more, when I was younger (even in smaller roles), in films like; Julia, Manhattan, Kramer Vs Kramer, Sophie’s Choice, Silkwood (mainly her films from the 70’s & 80’s); and even loved her in very non-Streep comical role, from the 90’s, in Death Becomes Her!! But I do like her in movies, like The Hours, Doubt, and The Iron Lady, as well. When it comes to, The Manchurian Candidate, I definitely prefer, the original, Angela Lansbury’s role, to Streep’s, remake!! Am yet to watch Out of Africa and Julie & Julia!!! I would love to!!

    1. Nuwansen, welcome. Oh, please, I know you would love both Out of Africa and Julie & Julia. I hope you get a chance to rent them soon. She’s had quite a filmography and shows no signs of slowing down. While it is obvious she’s having fun with all roles, I hope she finds roles that bring out the subtle brilliance of her characters instead of picking over-the -top silly characters.

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