Art Imitates Life: Best Biopics

I have not seen Bohemian Rhapsody yet. Yes I know it won an Oscar, was critically acclaimed, yada yada. However, I have seen plenty of other biopics, some of them were good, some great, and some downright terrible, (I’m looking at you Lifetime). Anyway, here are my top picks for the best biopics of all time.

1. Malcolm X

Denzel Washington should have won an Oscar for this. He was robbed. ROBBED. This movie was fantastic. Spike Lee directed the heck out of this one. Denzel was outstanding as Malcolm.

2. Milk

Sean Penn was great as Harvey Milk. This movie took home some Oscars too. This is a film that I can watch again and again. Last year was the 40th anniversary of Harvey Milk’s death, which I did not know also coincided with the 40 year anniversary of the Jonestown massacre that took place two weeks prior to Harvey’s assassination.

3. Ray

Jamie Foxx. That is all you need to know about this one. Jamie embodied this role and it is unfortunate that the actual Ray Charles did not live to see the film premiere, although he was alive while they were filming. Shout out to Regina King too.

4. Straight Outta Compton

Ice Cube, Dr Dre, and Eazy-E’s stories shined bright in this gritty biopic that was executive produced and helmed by Ice Cube and Dr Dre. Eazy-E’s family had input as well. This film shows what is possible when the artist/estate has majority control in how their story is portrayed. Ice Cube’s son even had a role as young Ice Cube in the film.

5. Selena

Jennifer Lopez bodied this role. Selena was the Tejana queen and the film showcased her rise to fame and a life that was cut too short.

6. The Jacksons: An All America Dream

Although this is a TV movie, the film was great. Shout out to Jason Weaver as a young MJ. The movie is 4 hours long when you play it all the way through, but it is one of the best Jackson centered biopics to date.

7. The Wolf of Wall Street

Jordan Belfort was a scammer. He was Bernie Madoff before there was a Bernie Madoff. Leo DiCaprio played this role well and I enjoyed seeing Jonah Hill in a more serious role. Margo Robbie was in this as well, it was one of her earlier roles.

8. Goodfellas

A lot of people died. Henry Hill was a rat. This movie was good, even if it was a tad violent. I liked this one better than The Godfather series.

9. What’s Love Got To Do With It

Angela Bassett ya’ll. Angela Bassett. The arms. The singing. The acting. All phenomenal. She should have won an Oscar for it.

10. The Temptations

“Ain’t nobody coming to see you Otis.” This line is still quoted to this day. Boy oh boy. Leon was in all the movies back then and he did great as David Ruffin. The rest of the cast did good too.


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