Best Period Dramas on Amazon Prime Right Now

15 Best Period Dramas on Amazon Prime Right Now – Simply because of the evident work put into them, one is compelled to develop a better sense of appreciation for movies set in a bygone era. Recreating a specific era in time, especially if it’s done using props and sets rather than special effects, is a massive effort for the entire team, including the production designers, art directors, and even the authors, because they select how the setting will be used to greatest effect. Furthermore, recreating virtual history isn’t restricted to props like a storefront, an old muscle vehicle, or costumes. It incorporates the mood and way of life for the time period chosen by the film.

The world we live in is full with stories to tell, ranging in scale from intimate home-grown tales to conflicts that changed the course of history as we know it, and Prime Video provides a slew of period/historical films with excellent craftsmanship on show. Even a cursory glance at the list reveals that the Second World War is by far the most chronicled event in history, but there are other treasures as well, ranging from Biblical times to the not-so-recent end of the twentieth century itself. With that out of the way, here’s a list of extremely good historical movies on Amazon Prime that are currently accessible to stream.

15. Padmaavat (2018)

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‘Padmaavat’ is the account of Queen Padmavati of Chittorgarh, who conducted ‘Jauhar,’ or the age-old patriarchal tradition of self-immolation, along with a hundred or more other women in the face of imminent loss as an act to defend her honor, after the fort was besieged by invader Alauddin Khilji. The film is all you’ve come to expect from Sanjay Leela Bhansali, a bollywood director who has made elaborately detailed, magnificent looking mega budget sets and excellent production design against historical settings a genre specialization, a forte of his own. When I say this, I also mean that, like earlier Bhansali films, even if you don’t take the tale home, especially in this one when the processes seem drawn out, the excellence of the craft stays with you.

14. Jesus of Nazareth (1977)

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This is essentially gospel for persons of faith. Nearly 400 minutes of Jesus Christ’s life told in stunning detail, from his nativity or birth to his death on blasphemy charges for calling himself God, and his resurrection as his disciples exult. While the most well-known chapters are described in minute detail, the narrative also includes parallel key occurrences; events that are important in Christian history. To be honest, I thought Mel Gibson’s version was a little better. Even for those who are not religious, ‘Jesus of Nazareth’ may be the most informative video on this list due to the sheer number of knowledge on show.

13. The King’s Choice (2017)

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‘The King’s Choice,’ a biographical war film written by Harald Rosenlw-Eeg and Jan Trygve Ryneland, stars Jesper Christensen, Anders Baasmo Christiansen, Tuva Novotny, and Katharina Schüttler. The Erik Poppe-directed film is about King Haakon VII, King of Norway, and the Norwegian royal family during the Second World War, just as the country was set to be invaded by the Germans. During the stressful few days, the monarch had to make a very daring decision that would not only influence the country’s future but also redefine his legacy as a leader.

12. Papillon (2017)

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‘Papillon,’ a remake of the beloved 1980s classic starring Steve McQueen and Dustin Hoffman, is the story of Henri Charriere, a man imprisoned for false conviction, and the relationship he makes with a fellow inmate at the notorious Devil’s Island prison as the two attempt to escape. In this remake, Charlie Hunnam and Rami Malek shockingly embrace their parts quite well, and you are guaranteed to have a nice time watching it if you can shrug off the shadow of the first, as this 2017 picture does. A special mention should be made of the tremendously well-done musical score, which is unusual for films of this type.

11. The Lost City of Z (2016)

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The mythology of Percy Fawcett – a British explorer who went missing in the Amazon jungles while searching for the lost city of Z, sometimes known as the illusive El Dorado – drew me to the film. While the picture is technically sound and visually stunning in moments, it falls short in terms of storyline. Give it a go if you like Charlie Hunnam or historical adventures.

10. Enemy at the Gates (2001)

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‘Enemy at the Gates’ is a somewhat fictionalised story of a widely recorded sniper engagement between a Soviet and a German sniper during the Battle of Stalingrad, but unlike other fictionalised stories of combat, the ‘fiction’ component serves only for entertainment purposes, rather than propaganda. Both Jude Law and Ed Harris are credible as sparring snipers engaged in a battle to the death, the latter more so than the former. It is not a perfect description of the battle of Stalingrad, nor does it claim to be. An fun war film that focuses on action rather than patriotism or anti-war sentiment, nothing more, nothing less.

9. Silence (2016)

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‘Silence,’ one of two Scorsese films on this list, is regrettably not considered among the director’s greater works due to a basic misjudgment of its subject matter. I agree that it’s not like anything Scorsese has directed before, but it doesn’t imply it’s a bad film. This picture, which runs for about 150 minutes, is filled with silences, as the title suggests. I won’t even suggest that the lengthy runtime has a payoff and is worthwhile for the average viewer. However, I will say this: ‘Silence’ is visually stunning and well performed. It is evident that this was a more personal endeavor for Scorsese, an extension of his own religion, since it unfolds at its own sumptuous pace. If you can persevere in giving in to his vision, this film may be for you.

8. Valkyrie (2008)

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If you can set some of the factual mistakes aside, ‘Valkyrie’ can be a wonderful, exhilarating viewing that also showcases a relatively poorly chronicled aspect of history in a rather entertaining manner, thanks to its all-star ensemble lead by Tom Cruise. The title of the film is derived from an operation of the same name, which aimed to topple the Nazi regime in the waning days of WWII in the face of impending defeat by assassinating Hitler, and was led by Colonel Claus von Stauffenberg and his cadet of soldiers, the exploits of which are detailed in the film. The operation was a disaster, and the squad was killed for treason against the government, but the build-up to that obvious end is intensely staged to feign genuine interest, which is a success for the film.

7. Kesari (2019)

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Anurag Singh directed and co-wrote the Indian Hindi-language military film ‘Kesari.’ The film tells the account of the Battle of Saragarhi, a bloody battle in which 10,000 Afridi and Orakzai Pashtun tribesmen attacked the outpost at Saragarhi, where the British Indian Army’s 36th Sikhs had only 21 soldiers to defend the region. When the adversaries were staring them down, Havildar Ishar Singh, a valiant soldier, led his troops into one of history’s most horrific battles. While providing an intimate look at the conflict, the film also offers light on the conditions that led up to it.

6. Hotel Rwanda (2004)

Best Period Dramas on Amazon Prime Right Now - ThiruttuVCD‘Hotel Rwanda’ is an amazing must-see film that will open your eyes to a reality that at least half of the world is unaware of. The film is based on the extraordinary true story of Paul Rusesabagina, who saved hundreds of Tutsi civilians (one of two Rwandan ethnic populations left after Belgium left the nation) from Hutu extremists who perpetrated genocide against the Tutsis. ‘Hotel Rwanda,’ colloquially known as the ‘African Schindler’s List’ by some moviegoers, and I can see why, is a searing humanitarian picture about a great spirit, one that deserved to be told, but clearly needs to be heard by so many more.

5. The Courier (2020)

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‘The Courier,’ written by Tom O’Connor, is a historical spy film starring Benedict Cumberbatch, Merab Ninidze, Rachel Brosnahan, and Jessie Buckley. The Dominic Cooke-directed film follows a British businessman as he works with a Soviet officer during one of the Cold War’s most tense periods. As the threat of nuclear war and widespread death and destruction grows, these two men lay the framework to defuse the Cuban Missile Crisis and escape the calamitous disaster.

4. A Bridge Too Far (1977)

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With a large ensemble that includes over a hundred well-known names and faces from three different countries, ‘A Bridge Too Far’ is a work of vision, big in its execution and approach; in fact, it is the first view you will form as you watch the film. One unusual thing for a war film is that it attempts to expose and highlight the inadequacy and lapses in judgment that threatened and ultimately caused the failure of Operation Market Garden, which was intended for the Allied Forces to capture a series of bridges in German-occupied Netherlands for strategic and combat advantages. In that regard, I felt the film to be informative enough without relying too heavily on nationalistic jingoism and propaganda commentary. If you’re a history enthusiast, this is a must-read.

3. The Great Escape (1963)

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Entertaining isn’t word that comes to mind while viewing a historical World War II film, yet this did make me smile. I may be quoting Thanos here, but the film deserves that description. ‘The Great Escape,’ directed by Steve McQueen and starring Steve McQueen, Richard Attenborough, James Garner, and Charles Bronson, amongst others, depicts the exploits of hundreds of Allied prisoners of war who intend to escape from a German camp after being imprisoned during WWII. One of the film’s strongest points is that, despite the large number of characters, both main and supporting, you grow to care about the bulk of them, thanks to a number of well-written introduction moments. Simply put, one of the best WWII films.

2. A Beautiful Mind (2001)

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‘A Beautiful Mind,’ directed by Ron Howard, is a success in simple yet effective storytelling, and it stars an easily earnest Crowe. Every year, Hollywood produces dozens of character and real-life biographies, but ‘A Beautiful Mind’ is simply so much more than that, aside from being beautifully well done. The film follows the life of great mathematician John Nash, from making a major discovery early in his career to decrypting secret signals for the government, developing paranoid schizophrenia, and finally receiving a Nobel Prize late in his life. From documenting an astonishing voyage to exploring the beauty of the human mind itself, this is a work of art.

1. Gangs of New York (2002)

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New York, Scorsese, DiCaprio, Cameron Diaz The Five Points Area, Revenge, and the Time Period I could go on and on about why you should definitely see the film if you haven’t already. Daniel Day-Lewis, on the other hand, can easily outperform everyone named above, including Scorsese. His horrifying performance as Bill “The Butcher,” one of his finest in his lengthy career, is chilling to say the least, especially in the film’s last scene. There’s a lot to like here, but Daniel Day Lewis takes the cake, as does the bakery.