With 'The Iron Lady' due out on worldwide release tomorrow, January 6th 2012, it seems that the critics have two very different views of the leading actress Meryl Streep's performance and that of the film itself. 'The Iron Lady' is, as everyone's aware by now, a biopic based on the life of the UK's first, and thus far only, female Prime Minister and documents her political career through the 80s and into her later life when she suffered dementia.
It's not been a wholly rapturous reception for the film as the reviews have rolled in ahead of the general release, whilst perhaps understandably Thatcher's own family declined an invitation to see the movie at a public screening. The Press Association had reported director Phyllida Lloyd telling the Bbc, "They didn't take up our offer and I can quite understand them not wanting to see it in the public gaze so we are not actually sure whether they have seen it or not."
Ultimately critics seem to think that the film itself is mediocre though Streep's performance has stood apart, with Empire Magazine commenting it was "One of Streep's finest-ever performances," and Usa Today critiquing "Though not illuminating as a historical biopic, the film features a tour-de-force performance by Meryl Streep." The New York Times haven't been so forthcoming with praise, saying "You are left with the impression of an old woman who can't quite remember who she used to be and of a movie that is not so sure either," and unfortunately for 'The Iron Lady's' makers theirs has largely set the tone for most reviews, earning the film a 55% average score on aggregator site Rotten Tomatoes.