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Parents' Guide to


By Kat Halstead, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 12+

Historical drama has wartime violence, frequent smoking.

Movie PG-13 2023 100 minutes
Golda movie poster: Helen Mirren features as Golda Meir.

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While the decision to choose a non-Jewish or Israeli actor to play the titular role has drawn controversy, Mirren is characteristically reliable in embodying Israel's fourth Prime Minister. Golda concentrates as much on a moment in history as it does on the woman nicknamed the "Iron Lady" (a moniker she was handed long before Margaret Thatcher). Rather than exploring the character's past or even family -- she had two children, though is seen alone but for her assistant (a practical but caring Camille Cottin) -- the film focuses on a 19-day period, punctuated by a tribunal that followed. Mirren shows great levels of emotion through quite heavy prosthetics. There are enjoyable moments of sarcasm and sly manipulation that peek at a more interesting side to the political figure. But when compared to the real-life footage of Golda shown toward the end of the film -- vivacious, self-assured, celebrated; upstaging a table full of male politicians at the peace accord -- it feels like the movie never quite captures the energy or gets beneath the skin of the infamous figure. A well-made retelling of an important moment in history, and an interesting spotlight on a controversial woman, the movie is enjoyable but less impactful than its subject matter may promise.

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