2017, 124 min, Czech Republic, Dir: David Mrnka

This stunning biopic of revolutionary Czech politician Milada Horáková’s (Ayelet Zurer) fight for her country’s freedom was nominated for Best Film at the Czech Lion awards. While her story is not widely known outside the region, Horáková’s fight for gender equality is as timely as ever. Zurer gives a passionate, memorable performance in the title role, while Robert Gant provides a moving depiction of her supportive and defiant husband. With its award-winning costumes and makeup, MILADA is a film as beautiful as it is tragic.

2018, Amazon Studios, 154 min, UK, Dir: Mike Leigh

In his newest film, Mike Leigh returns to the realm of historical drama that he explored with MR. TURNER, here commemorating the 200th anniversary of the Peterloo Massacre in Manchester, England. Though not well-known in the U.S., this 1819 protest against Parliament met with an unexpectedly violent response from a military terrified of domestic revolution, and its chaotic climax led to wide-ranging reform within both the electoral system and modern British journalism. PETERLOO achieves breathtaking scope while preserving meticulous attention to period detail, and Leigh commands his massive crowd of extras just as deftly as he handles the remarkable ensemble cast led by Maxine Peake, Rory Kinnear and David Moorst.

1987, Universal, 94 min, Dir: Alex Cox

Born in Nashville in 1824, William Walker is one of American history’s forgotten rogues, a mercenary whose attempts to bring slavery to Central America briefly made him president of Nicaragua. Ed Harris stars in Alex Cox’s thought-provoking drama, whose deliberate anachronisms underline the fact that the more things change, the more they stay the same (the film was shot on location during the Contra War). With Peter Boyle, Marlee Matlin, René Auberjonois and a score by frequent Cox collaborator Joe Strummer of The Clash. “Without being solemn, it's deadly serious. ... WALKER is something very rare in American movies these days. It has some nerve." - Vincent Canby, The New York Times.

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