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Watch these biographical films on Lionsgate Play to delve into some interesting lives

  • Shilpa S

Watch these biographical films on Lionsgate Play to delve into some interesting lives

There may be few storytelling mediums more powerful than Cinema. Among the wide range of genres, films have experimented with, the real-life stories of people and places have never gone out of style, even holding their own against awe-inspiring genres such as fantasy and science fiction which can visually stun viewers. There seems to be a strange kind of allure in seeing a person’s whole life being traced on film, the artistic narrative woven into real stories a huge part of the wide popularity of biographical dramas.

Seeing people we know of as characters on screen in avatars unfamiliar, until the actor captures the essence of what makes them who they are, is enthralling. It is also good fun to don the role of couch critics when the filmmaker gets wrong a detail here and there of personality viewers intimately know.

For fans of biographical films, here is a list of the same that viewers can stream and enjoy on the OTT platform Lionsgate Play.

When talking of the greatest of boxing legends of all time, the name of Muhammad Ali is sure to pop up. The legendary boxer has etched his name in pop culture for not only his exploits within the ring but also for some of his stances which were deemed controversial at the time. Starring Will Smith as the titular protagonist, Ali traces a crucial decade in the boxing icon’s life including his religious conversion, opposition to the Vietnam War and his redemptive win in 1947. The highly engaging film was praised, especially for a powerful performance by Smith.
Bandit Queen
The real-life story of bandit turned politician Phoolan Devi is one to put even the most fast-paced thrillers to shame. From a tumultuous childhood and young life spotted with tragedy, Devi had one of the most intriguing transitions through the course of her life going from an incarcerated leader of a bandit group to a member of parliament. Starring Seema Biswas as the titular protagonist Bandit Queen is based on the book India's Bandit Queen: The True Story of Phoolan Devi, and chronicles the life of the late Devi from her tumultuous marriage to her incarceration for her crimes. Although rife with controversy, with even Phoolan Devi having voiced her disapproval of the film, it was lauded by critics who praised the ambitious take of the movie.
The road to success never seems to come without snags and even a period of losing oneself. And that seems to be true from the intriguing story of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs. From a college dropout to successfully helming one of the most well-known tech companies of the world, one which he had brought back from the brink of bankruptcy, Jobs’ story seems to encapsulate the very nature of the American dream. Starring Ashton Kutcher as the titular business magnate, Jobs tells the story of the late CEO from his days as a bright-eyed college student to the year 2001, when Apple launched its best selling portable media player the iPod.
Mangal Pandey - The Rising
Which Indian patriot would be unfamiliar with the heroic Mangal Pandey, the infantryman who led a rebellion in 1857 against the East India Company. His valour even when the odds were stacked against him was beautifully woven onto the silver screen through the 2005 film Mangal Pandey: The Rising. Starring Aamir Khan as the titular freedom fighter, the historical drama chronicles the life of Pandey while he served as a sepoy in the infantry and the events which sparked the flare of the uprising in him, until his execution for being a part of the mutiny.
Adversities and hard times help to show that people, even the ones we deem ordinary, are made of stronger stuff than one would have thought. Starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Stronger is based on a memoir and tells the story of American Jeff Bauman, for whom a simple day of trying to cheer his wife on at the Boston Marathon turned into one of tragedy as he became the victim of a bombing attack. Although he had a miraculous escape with his life, the attack left Bauman an amputee after he lost his legs from the knees down in the aftermath. The film focuses on Bauman’s life post his traumatic ordeal, where he not only has to suffer from the physical and mental trauma from the tragedy but also the incessant media attention as well. The inspiring film was lauded for its authentic, yet emotive and sensitive portrayal of Bauman’s story.
The Glass Castle
Based on the best selling memoir of the same name, The Glass Castle tells the poignant story of a young woman’s tumultuous childhood and strained relationship with her parents, whose hedonistic life and apathetic attitude towards their children scar them in untold ways. The film chronicles the life of Jeannette Walls, an author and former columnist, as she narrates the story of her nomadic life with her family and how she was to achieve success despite coming from difficult circumstances.