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Margaret Takes Charge,
This review is from: The Falklands Play [DVD] (DVD)
Patricia Hodge is formidable in her role as Margaret Thatcher. She portrays the confidence of a woman in utter control, who deftly manages the escalating crisis as Argentina becomes ever more belligerent in its attempts to claim the Falkland Islands, which had been a British dependent territory since 1832. We see Margaret Thatcher at what was arguably the pinnacle of her career, undertaking complex and risky negotiations, finally sanctioning the war as a last resort. Well aware of the consequences, she is, at the same time, stricken by the loss of life, when the casualty lists come in.
Ably supported by an outstanding ensemble cast, Patricia Hodge, a consummate actress, turns in a powerful performance. She makes no attempt to imitate any of Mrs Thatcher's characteristic speech patterns, and perhaps because she is playing for truth of character, rather than imitation, she convinces us absolutely in her portrayal of Margaret Thatcher's statesmanship; her exercise of diplomacy; her frustration over Argentine intransigence and Washington's attempts to straddle the diplomatic fence; her anger over the plight of the Falkland Islanders; her profound sorrow at the deaths of the troops that she has sent to war; and her sincerity in personally writing letters of condolence to each of the families of the fallen.
Even though we know the outcome of the Falklands War, this film is compelling in its suspense as the negotiations unfold.