Blu-Ray Pick of the Week: "The French Lieutenant's Woman" (1981)

A year before her iconic Sophie's Choice performance, Meryl Streep was nominated for this film, a movie she was just as good in, and in a way I consider to be her quintessential performance. It's because she got to play two parts, the character in a period drama racked by torment with all the theatricality and mannered accents Streep is known for, and the present day actress playing that part, who's also having an affair with her co-star Jeremy Irons. In that role she's subtle, natural and laid-back, the opposite of the character she's playing in the film within the film. For that reason this is Meryl Streep in all the ways you know her, all on the screen at one time. This is more of a movie about acting than the story based on the actual novel, and that makes it kind of a strange film overall, different than what you'd expect. But it's worth checking out for Meryl, as it could have easily been her first Best Actress award, but of course that was coming right after this.

Original 1981 Trailer: