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Period Dramas & Romances: The 2018 Golden Globe Nominees Watchlist

Similar to the Academy Awards, the Golden Globes are political in nature. Critical darlings and those on the popularity list usually get nominated, often leaving out fantasy and science fiction. And, of course, romance or anything old-fashioned (as if Call the Midwife doesn’t deserve nominations…).

That being said, you can still find several awesome movies and TV shows in the midst of the nominees. And with the recent release of the 2018 Golden Globe Nominees, thankfully a few titles were either period dramas or romantic in essence.  I thought I would point them out to all of you in case you are seeking something new to watch on the big or small screen.

However, as we have an old-fashioned theme, no explicit shows or movies made the list (as you can imagine, several titles were cut). Some romantic or period titles with Rated R like content that may be of interest include favorites like Outlander, Feud: Bette and Joan, and the new series The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. You can read the full list of the 2018 Golden Globe Nominees here.

The 2018 Golden Globe Nominees: Romantic and Period Films

#1: Battle of the Sexes

Official Synopsis: In the wake of the sexual revolution and the rise of the women’s movement, the 1973 tennis match between women’s world champion Billie Jean King (Emma Stone) and ex-men’s-champ and serial hustler Bobby Riggs (Steve Carell) was billed as the BATTLE OF THE SEXES and became one of the most watched televised sports events of all time, reaching 90 million viewers around the world.  

As the rivalry between King and Riggs kicked into high gear, off-court each was fighting more personal and complex battles.  The fiercely private King was not only championing for equality but also struggling to come to terms with her own sexuality, as her friendship with Marilyn Barnett (Andrea Riseborough) developed.  And Riggs, one of the first self-made media-age celebrities, wrestled with his gambling demons, at the expense of his family and wife Priscilla (Elisabeth Shue).  Together, Billie and Bobby served up a cultural spectacle that resonated far beyond the tennis court, sparking discussions in bedrooms and boardrooms that continue to reverberate today.  

Nominations: Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy (Emma Stone); Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy (Steve Carell)

Content: Rated PG-13 for some sexual content and partial nudity

Why You Should Check it Out: This is for those who love everything about the Feminist movement, particularly from the 1970s.

#2: Darkest Hour
2018 Golden Globe Nominees - Darkest Hour
Photo: Focus Features

Official Synopsis: During the early days of World War II, with the fall of France imminent, Britain faces its darkest hour as the threat of invasion looms. As the seemingly unstoppable Nazi forces advance, and with the Allied army cornered on the beaches of Dunkirk, the fate of Western Europe hangs on the leadership of the newly-appointed British Prime Minister Winston Churchill [Academy Award nominee Gary Oldman]. While maneuvering his political rivals, he must confront the ultimate choice: negotiate with Hitler and save the British people at a terrible cost or rally the nation and fight on against incredible odds. Directed by Joe Wright, Darkest Hour is the dramatic and inspiring story of four weeks in 1940 during which Churchill’s courage to lead changed the course of world history. 


Nominations: Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Drama (Gary Oldman)

Content: Rated PG-13 for some thematic material.

Why You Should Check It Out: With an amazing cast and director (Joe Wright also directed the 2005 Pride & Prejudice), Darkest Hour should be on the top of every period drama lover’s list.

#3: Dunkirk

Official Synopsis: From filmmaker Christopher Nolan (Interstellar, Inception, The Dark Knight Trilogy) comes the epic action thriller Dunkirk.

Dunkirk opens as hundreds of thousands of British and Allied troops are surrounded by enemy forces. Trapped on the beach with their backs to the sea, they face an impossible situation as the enemy closes in. The story unfolds on land, sea and air. RAF Spitfires engage the enemy in the skies above the Channel, trying to protect the defenseless men below. Meanwhile, hundreds of small boats manned by both military and civilians are mounting a desperate rescue effort, risking their lives in a race against time to save even a fraction of their army.

Dunkirk features a multigenerational ensemble cast, including Fionn Whitehead, Tom Glynn-Carney, Jack Lowden, Harry Styles, Aneurin Barnard, James D’Arcy and Barry Keoghan, with Kenneth Branagh, Cillian Murphy, Mark Rylance and Tom Hardy.

Nominations: Best Motion Picture – Drama; Best Director – Motion Picture (Christopher Nolan); Best Original Score – Motion Picture (Hans Zimmer)

Content: Rated PG-13 for intense war experience and some language.

Why You Should Check It Out: Kenneth Branagh, Christopher Nolan as director, an epic musical score from Hans Zimmer, and a great drama for those who like learning more about World War II.

#4: The Greatest Showman
2018 Golden Globe Nominees - The Greatest Showman
Photo: 20th Century Fox

Official Synopsis: “The Greatest Showman” is a bold and original musical that celebrates the birth of show business and the sense of wonder we feel when dreams come to life. Inspired by the ambition and imagination of P.T. Barnum, “The Greatest Showman” tells the story of a visionary who rose from nothing to create a mesmerizing spectacle that became a worldwide sensation. “The Greatest Showman” is directed by exciting new filmmaker, Michael Gracey, with songs by Academy Award® winners Benj Pasek and Justin Paul (“La La Land”) and starring Academy Award nominee Hugh Jackman. Jackman is joined by Zac Efron, Academy Award nominee Michelle Williams, Rebecca Ferguson and Zendaya.

Nominations: Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy; Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy (Hugh Jackman); Best Original Song-Motion Picture

Why You Should Check It Out: The music and Hugh Jackman in another period drama musical should be reason enough…

#5: Phantom Thread

Official Synopsis: Set in the glamour of 1950’s post-war London, renowned dressmaker Reynolds Woodcock [Daniel Day-Lewis] and his sister Cyril [Lesley Manville] are at the center of British fashion, dressing royalty, movie stars, heiresses, socialites, debutants and dames with the distinct style of The House of Woodcock. Women come and go through Woodcock’s life, providing the confirmed bachelor with inspiration and companionship, until he comes across a young, strong-willed woman, Alma [Vicky Krieps], who soon becomes a fixture in his life as his muse and lover. Once controlled and planned, he finds his carefully tailored life disrupted by love.

With his latest film, Paul Thomas Anderson paints an illuminating portrait both of an artist on a creative journey, and the women who keep his world running. Phantom Thread is Paul Thomas Anderson’s eighth movie, and his second collaboration with Daniel Day-Lewis.

Nominations: Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Drama (Daniel Day-Lewis); Best Original Score – Motion Picture (Jonny Greenwood)

Content: Rated R for Language (IMDB says this is moderate but take the rating into consideration)

Why You Should Check It Out: The trailer alone looks like an artistic masterpiece. But it is also supposed to be Daniel Day-Lewis’ last film. That probably means something. I’m hoping for something as quietly epic as The Age of Innocence. Crossing Fingers.

#6: The Post

2018 Golden Globe Nominees - The Post

Official Synopsis: Steven Spielberg directs Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks in The Post, a thrilling drama about the unlikely partnership between The Washington Post’s Katharine Graham (Streep), the first female publisher of a major American newspaper, and editor Ben Bradlee (Hanks), as they race to catch up with The New York Times to expose a massive cover-up of government secrets that spanned three decades and four U.S. Presidents. The two must overcome their differences as they risk their careers – and their very freedom – to help bring long-buried truths to light.

Nominations: Best Motion Picture – Drama, Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture – Drama (Meryl Streep), Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Drama (Tom Hanks), Best Director – Motion Picture (Steven Spielberg), Best Screenplay – Motion Picture (Liz Hannah, Josh Singer), and Best Original Score – Motion Picture (John Williams).

Content: Rated PG-13 for language and brief war violence

Why You Should Check It Out: Tom Hanks and Meryl Streep together in a Spielberg movie with a John Williams score? I’m in.

#7: The Star

Official Synopsis: In Sony Pictures Animation’s The Star, a small but brave donkey named Bo yearns for a life beyond his daily grind at the village mill. One day he finds the courage to break free, and finally goes on the adventure of his dreams. On his journey, he teams up with Ruth, a loveable sheep who has lost her flock and Dave, a dove with lofty aspirations. Along with three wisecracking camels and some eccentric stable animals, Bo and his new friends follow the Star and become unlikely heroes in the greatest story ever told – the first Christmas.

Nomination: Best Original Song-Motion Picture

Content: Rated PG for some thematic elements

Why You Should Check It Out: The perfect Christmas movie to take the kids, grandchildren, etc. to see. Plus, the film sounds adorable.

#8: Victoria & Abdul

2018 Golden Globe Nominees - Victoria and Abdul

Official Synopsis: The extraordinary true story of an unexpected friendship in the later years of Queen Victoria’s [Academy Award winner Judi Dench] remarkable rule.

When Abdul Karim [Ali Fazal], a young clerk, travels from India to participate in the Queen’s Golden Jubilee, he is surprised to find favor with the Queen herself. As the Queen questions the constrictions of her long-held position, the two forge an unlikely and devoted alliance with a loyalty to one another that her household and inner circle all attempt to destroy.

As the friendship deepens, the Queen begins to see a changing world through new eyes and joyfully reclaims her humanity.

Nomination: Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy Judi Dench)

Content: Rated PG-13 for some thematic elements and language

Why You Should Check It Out: It’s so wonderful that we get to see Judi Dench play Queen Victoria once more. A definite must-see period film.

The 2018 Golden Globe Nominees: TV Series

#1: The Crown
The Crown
Photo: Netflix

Official Synopsis: The Crown tells the inside story of two of the most famous addresses in the world — Buckingham Palace and 10 Downing Street – and the intrigues, love lives and machinations behind the great events that shaped the second half of the 20th century. Two houses, two courts, one Crown.

Nominations: Best Television Series – Drama; Best Performance by an Actress In A Television Series – Drama (Claire Foy)

Content: While rated TV-MA, season one is very mild and not graphic in nature. However, there are moments of non-sexual nudity. That being said, it should be noted that apparently, one episode in season 2 contains an explicit sex scene and nudity (Episode 7) so you are warned.

Why You Should Check It Out: The writing and acting are pure brilliance. And while I love Claire Foy and Matt Smith as the leads, the real scene stealer is John Lithgow as Winston Churchill. There are a few goosebump-inducing moments for sure.

#2: Genius

Official Synopsis: This spring, National Geographic presents GENIUS, the network’s first-ever scripted series, based on the Walter Isaacson book Einstein: His Life and Universe and executive produced by Ron Howard and Brian Grazer, with Howard also directing the first episode. The all-star cast includes Geoffrey Rush as Professor Einstein, Johnny Flynn as Albert in his youth and Emily Watson as the scientist’s second wife — and first cousin — Elsa Einstein. Over 10 episodes, the series takes Einstein’s story beyond the halls of academia to explore his struggles to be a good husband and father, and a man of principle during a period of global unrest. His daringly creative mind often landed him in trouble with his loved ones and peers, but also helped him to usher in groundbreaking discoveries that reshaped modern science.

Nomination: Best Performance by an Actor in a Limited Series or a Motion Picture Made for Television Geoffrey Rush)

Content: Rated TV-14.

Why You Should Check It Out: Ron Howard directing a period drama miniseries means Genius is likely high quality.

#3: The Good Doctor
2018 Golden Globe Nominees - The Good Doctor
Photo: ABC

Official Synopsis: Shaun Murphy (Freddie Highmore, “Bates Motel”), a young surgeon with autism and savant syndrome, relocates from a quiet country life to join a prestigious hospital’s surgical unit. Alone in the world and unable to personally connect with those around him, Shaun uses his extraordinary medical gifts to save lives and challenge the skepticism of his colleagues.

Nomination: Best Performance by an Actor In A Television Series – Drama (Freddie Highmore)

Content: Rated TV-14.

Why You Should Check It Out: Uniquely adapted from a Korean Drama, fans of the genre should definitely take note of this one.

#4: Stranger Things

Official Synopsis: A love letter to the ’80s classics that captivated a generation, Stranger Things is set in 1983 Indiana, where a young boy vanishes into thin air. As friends, family and local police search for answers, they are drawn into an extraordinary mystery involving top-secret government experiments, terrifying supernatural forces and one very strange little girl.

Nominations: Best Television Series – Drama; Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Series, Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television (David Harbour)

Content: Rated TV-14 for horror, sexuality, and language. However, there are moments of horror in season 2 that start to lean towards TV-MA.

Why You Should Check It Out: For those who love films from the ‘80s, Winona Ryder, and the supernatural. If you aren’t watching yet, you are seriously missing one of the best shows available. Plus, it’s addicting. Super binge-worthy addicting. Of my personal favorites from the 2018 Golden Globe Nominees.

#5: This is Us
This is Us
Mandy Moore and Milo Ventimiglia in NBC”s “This Is Us”

Official Synopsis: Everyone has a family. And every family has a story. “This Is Us” chronicles the Pearson family across the decades: from Jack (Milo Ventimiglia) and Rebecca (Mandy Moore) as young parents in the 1980s to their 37-year-old kids Kevin (Justin Hartley), Kate (Chrissy Metz) and Randall (Sterling K. Brown) searching for love and fulfillment in the present day. This grounded, life-affirming dramedy reveals how the tiniest events in our lives impact who we become, and how the connections we share with each other can transcend time, distance and even death. From the writer and directors of “Crazy, Stupid, Love” comes a smart, modern show that will welcome you into a family you feel you’ve known for years.

Nominations: Best Television Series – Drama; Best Performance by an Actor In A Television Series – Drama (Sterling K. Brown); Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Series, Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television (Chrissy Metz)

Content: Rated TV-14.

Why You Should Check It Out: Watch This Is Us for all the emotions. It’s an emotional and superb show about family and love that just feels real. Moreover, it’s also half period drama so there’s that too!

#6: Will & Grace

Official Synopsis: That’s right, honey! A decade after their unforgettable eight-season run, comedy’s most fabulous foursome is back. Eric McCormack, Debra Messing, Sean Hayes and Megan Mullally reprise their infamous roles as Will, Grace, Jack and Karen. The legendary James Burrows, director of every original “Will & Grace” episode, returns along with a slew of razor-sharp jabs and dirty martinis. Behold once again, from the minds of Max Mutchnick and David Kohan, TV’s wittiest ensemble ever.

Nominations: Best Television Series – Musical or Comedy. Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series – Musical or Comedy (Eric McCormack).

Content: Rated TV-14

Why You Should Check It Out: This one is for the fans. If you loved the series when it first aired, you’ll love the return!

What movies or TV shows will you be checking out from this list of 2018 Golden Globe Nominees? Any recommendations of your own?

Silver Petticoat Review Logo Our romance-themed entertainment site is on a mission to help you find the best period dramas, romance movies, TV shows, and books. Other topics include Jane Austen, Classic Hollywood, TV Couples, Fairy Tales, Romantic Living, Romanticism, and more. We’re damsels not in distress fighting for the all-new optimistic Romantic Revolution. Join us and subscribe. For more information, see our About, Old-Fashioned Romance 101, Modern Romanticism 101, and Romantic Living 101.
By on December 18th, 2017

About Autumn Topping

In second grade, Autumn wrote her first story, “The Spinach Monster,” and hasn't stopped writing since. Intrigued by the tales her grandmother told of vampires, witches, and ghosts as a girl, she's always been drawn to the fantastic. Later, Autumn studied English and Creative Writing (continuing her love for classic literature and everything old-fashioned) and graduated with an MA in Children’s Literature and an MS in Library & Information Science from Simmons College. Currently, she co-runs this lovely site and works as a YA Librarian.

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