Drama film

Drama film

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A drama film is a film genre that depends mostly on in-depth development of realistic characters dealing with emotional themes. Dramatic themes such as alcoholism, drug addiction, infidelity
Infidelity
In many intimate relationships in many cultures there is usually an express or implied expectation of exclusivity, especially in sexual matters. Infidelity most commonly refers to a breach of the expectation of sexual exclusivity.Infidelity can occur in relation to physical intimacy and/or...

, moral dilemmas, racial prejudice, religious intolerance
Religious intolerance
Religious intolerance is intolerance against another's religious beliefs or practices.-Definition:The mere statement on the part of a religion that its own beliefs and practices are correct and any contrary beliefs incorrect does not in itself constitute intolerance...

, poverty
Poverty
Poverty is the lack of a certain amount of material possessions or money. Absolute poverty or destitution is inability to afford basic human needs, which commonly includes clean and fresh water, nutrition, health care, education, clothing and shelter. About 1.7 billion people are estimated to live...

, class divisions
Social stratification
In sociology the social stratification is a concept of class, involving the "classification of persons into groups based on shared socio-economic conditions ... a relational set of inequalities with economic, social, political and ideological dimensions."...

, violence against women
Violence against women
Violence against women is a technical term used to collectively refer to violent acts that are primarily or exclusively committed against women...

 and corruption
Corruption
Corruption usually refers to spiritual or moral impurity.Corruption may also refer to:* Corruption , an American crime film* Corruption , a British horror film...

 put the characters in conflict with themselves, others, society
Society
A society, or a human society, is a group of people related to each other through persistent relations, or a large social grouping sharing the same geographical or virtual territory, subject to the same political authority and dominant cultural expectations...

 and even natural phenomena. Drama is the most broad of movies genres and includes subgenres as romantic drama
Romance film
Romance films are love stories that focus on passion, emotion, and the affectionate involvement of the main characters and the journey that their love takes through courtship or marriage. Romance films make the love story or the search for love the main plot focus...

, sport films, period drama, courtroom drama and crime
Crime film
Crime films are films which focus on the lives of criminals. The stylistic approach to a crime film varies from realistic portrayals of real-life criminal figures, to the far-fetched evil doings of imaginary arch-villains. Criminal acts are almost always glorified in these movies.- Plays and films...

.

At the center of a drama is usually a character or characters who are in conflict at a crucial moment in their lives. They often revolve around families; movies like Ordinary People
Ordinary People
Ordinary People is a 1980 American drama film that marked the directorial debut of Robert Redford. It stars Donald Sutherland, Mary Tyler Moore, Judd Hirsch and Timothy Hutton....

dig under the skin of everyday life to ask big questions and touch on the deepest emotions of normal people. Dramas often, but not always, have tragic or at least painful resolutions and concern the survival of some tragic crisis, like the death of a family member (Terms of Endearment
Terms of Endearment
Terms of Endearment is a 1983 romantic comedy-drama film adapted by James L. Brooks from the novel by Larry McMurtry and starring Shirley MacLaine, Debra Winger, and Jack Nicholson...

), or a divorce
Divorce
Divorce is the final termination of a marital union, canceling the legal duties and responsibilities of marriage and dissolving the bonds of matrimony between the parties...

 (Kramer vs Kramer). Some of the greatest screen performances come from dramas, as there is ample opportunity for actors to stretch into a role that most other genres cannot afford.

Drama films have been nominated frequently for the Academy Award (particularly Best Picture) - more than any other film genre.

Sub-genres


Dramatic films include a very large spectrum of film genres. Because of the large number of drama films, these movies have been sub-categorized:
  • Crime drama and Legal drama
    Legal drama
    A legal drama is a work of dramatic fiction about crime and civil litigation. Subtypes of legal dramas include courtroom dramas and legal thrillers, and come in all forms, including novels, television shows, and films. Legal drama sometimes overlap with crime drama, most notably in the case of Law...

     – Character development based on themes involving criminals, law enforcement and the legal system.
  • Historical drama (epic) (including War drama
    War film
    War films are a film genre concerned with warfare, usually about naval, air or land battles, sometimes focusing instead on prisoners of war, covert operations, military training or other related subjects. At times war films focus on daily military or civilian life in wartime without depicting battles...

    ) – Films that focus on dramatic events in history.
  • Docudrama
    Docudrama
    In film, television programming and staged theatre, docudrama is a documentary-style genre that features dramatized re-enactments of actual historical events. As a neologism, the term is often confused with docufiction....

    : the difference between a docudrama and a documentary is that in a documentary it uses real people to describe history or current events; in a docudrama it uses professionally trained actors to play the roles in the current event, that is "dramatized" a bit. Not to be confused with docufiction
    Docufiction
    Docufiction is a neologism which refers to the cinematographic combination of documentary and fiction. More precisely, it is a documentary contaminated with fictional elements, in real time, filmed when the events take place, and in which someone - the character - plays his own role in real life...

    .
  • Comedy-drama
    Comedy-drama
    Comedy-drama is a genre of theatre, film and television programs which combines humorous and serious content.-Theatre:Traditional western theatre, beginning with the ancient Greeks, was divided into comedy and tragedy...

    : is in which there is an equal, or nearly equal balance of humor and serious content.
  • Melodrama
    Melodrama
    The term melodrama refers to a dramatic work that exaggerates plot and characters in order to appeal to the emotions. It may also refer to the genre which includes such works, or to language, behavior, or events which resemble them...

    : a sub-type of drama films that uses plots that appeal to the heightened emotions of the audience. Melodramatic plots often deal with "crises of human emotion, failed romance or friendship, strained familial situations, tragedy, illness, neuroses, or emotional and physical hardship." Film critics sometimes use the term "pejoratively to connote an unrealistic, pathos-filled, campy tale of romance or domestic situations with stereotypical characters (often including a central female character) that would directly appeal to feminine audiences." Also called "women's movies", "weepies", tearjerkers, or "chick flicks". If they are targeted to a male audience, then they are called "guy cry" films.
  • Romance
    Romance film
    Romance films are love stories that focus on passion, emotion, and the affectionate involvement of the main characters and the journey that their love takes through courtship or marriage. Romance films make the love story or the search for love the main plot focus...

    : a sub-type of dramatic film which dwells on the elements of romantic love
    Romantic love
    Romance is the pleasurable feeling of excitement and mystery associated with love.In the context of romantic love relationships, romance usually implies an expression of one's love, or one's deep emotional desires to connect with another person....

    .
  • Tragedy
    Tragedy
    Tragedy is a form of art based on human suffering that offers its audience pleasure. While most cultures have developed forms that provoke this paradoxical response, tragedy refers to a specific tradition of drama that has played a unique and important role historically in the self-definition of...

    : a drama in which a character's downfall is caused by a flaw in their character or by a major error in judgment.
  • Drama thriller: a type of drama film with thrilling plots, characters, motives and style.

Early film-1950s


In the early years of cinema
Film
A film, also called a movie or motion picture, is a series of still or moving images. It is produced by recording photographic images with cameras, or by creating images using animation techniques or visual effects...

, melodrama
Melodrama
The term melodrama refers to a dramatic work that exaggerates plot and characters in order to appeal to the emotions. It may also refer to the genre which includes such works, or to language, behavior, or events which resemble them...

 held sway, as the transition from silent cinema's pantomime left film with a more presentational manner. In the 1950s, however, the arrival of stage actors like Marlon Brando
Marlon Brando
Marlon Brando, Jr. was an American movie star and political activist. "Unchallenged as the most important actor in modern American Cinema" according to the St...

, trained in more naturalistic techniques, slowly changed drama to a more realistic tenor. A Streetcar Named Desire is considered a pivotal film in this development. By the late 1970s, melodrama was nearly finished as an overt genre, as the hunger for realism dominated film in groundbreaking movies like Martin Scorsese's Mean Streets
Mean Streets
Mean Streets is a 1973 drama film directed by Martin Scorsese and written by Scorsese and Mardik Martin. The film stars Harvey Keitel and Robert De Niro. It was released by Warner Bros. on October 2, 1973...

.

From the silent era to the 1950s, Dramas were tools to teach the audience. Films like The Grapes of Wrath
The Grapes of Wrath (film)
The Grapes of Wrath is a 1940 drama film directed by John Ford. It was based on John Steinbeck's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name. The screenplay was written by Nunnally Johnson and the executive producer was Darryl F...

(1940) show the effects of the depression. Citizen Kane
Citizen Kane
Citizen Kane is a 1941 American drama film, directed by and starring Orson Welles. Many critics consider it the greatest American film of all time, especially for its innovative cinematography, music and narrative structure. Citizen Kane was Welles' first feature film...

(1941) was said by Orson Welles to not be a biography of William Randolph Hearst
William Randolph Hearst
William Randolph Hearst was an American business magnate and leading newspaper publisher. Hearst entered the publishing business in 1887, after taking control of The San Francisco Examiner from his father...

, but a composite of many people from that era.
In the 1950s, began a rise in well-known dramatic actors. Montgomery Clift
Montgomery Clift
Edward Montgomery Clift was an American film and stage actor. The New York Times’ obituary noted his portrayal of "moody, sensitive young men"....

, Glenn Ford
Glenn Ford
Glenn Ford was a Canadian-born American actor from Hollywood's Golden Era with a career that spanned seven decades...

, James Dean
James Dean
James Byron Dean was an American film actor. He is a cultural icon, best embodied in the title of his most celebrated film, Rebel Without a Cause , in which he starred as troubled Los Angeles teenager Jim Stark...

, Bette Davis
Bette Davis
Ruth Elizabeth "Bette" Davis was an American actress of film, television and theater. Noted for her willingness to play unsympathetic characters, she was highly regarded for her performances in a range of film genres, from contemporary crime melodramas to historical and period films and occasional...

, and Marilyn Monroe
Marilyn Monroe
Marilyn Monroe was an American actress, singer, model and showgirl who became a major sex symbol, starring in a number of commercially successful motion pictures during the 1950s....

 were notable dramatic actors. Dramatic Films focused on character relationships and development. All About Eve
All About Eve
All About Eve is a 1950 American drama film written and directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz, based on the 1946 short story "The Wisdom of Eve", by Mary Orr.The film stars Bette Davis as Margo Channing, a highly regarded but aging Broadway star...

(1950) focused on women, and their relationship with men. Rebel Without a Cause
Rebel Without a Cause
Rebel Without a Cause is a 1955 American drama film about emotionally confused suburban, middle-class teenagers. Directed by Nicholas Ray, it offered both social commentary and an alternative to previous films depicting delinquents in urban slum environments...

(1955) displayed teenage angst. Films like 12 Angry Men (1957) and Anatomy of a Murder
Anatomy of a Murder
Anatomy of a Murder is a 1959 American courtroom crime drama film. It was directed by Otto Preminger and adapted by Wendell Mayes from the best-selling novel of the same name written by Michigan Supreme Court Justice John D. Voelker under the pen name Robert Traver...

(1959) show the inner workings of a courtroom.

Some of the most critically acclaimed drama films in Asian cinema
Asian cinema
Asian cinema refers to the film industries and films produced in the continent of Asia, and is also sometimes known as Eastern cinema. More commonly however, it is used to refer to the cinema of Eastern, Southeastern and Southern Asia. West Asian cinema is sometimes classified as part of Middle...

 were produced during the 1950s, including Yasujirō Ozu
Yasujiro Ozu
was a prominent Japanese film director and script writer. He is known for his distinctive technical style, developed during the silent era. Marriage and family, especially the relationships between the generations, are among the most persistent themes in his body of work...

's Tokyo Story
Tokyo Story
is a 1953 Japanese film directed by Yasujirō Ozu. It tells the story of an aging couple who travel to Tokyo to visit their grown children. The film contrasts the behavior of their biological children, who are too busy to pay them much attention, and their daughter-in-law, who treats them with...

(1953), Kenji Mizoguchi
Kenji Mizoguchi
Kenji Mizoguchi was a Japanese film director and screenwriter. His film Ugetsu won the Silver Lion at the Venice Film Festival, and appeared in the Sight & Sound Critics' Top Ten Poll in 1962 and 1972. Mizoguchi is renowned for his mastery of the long take and mise-en-scène...

's Ugetsu
Ugetsu
Ugetsu is a 1953 Japanese film directed by Kenji Mizoguchi. Set in 16th century Japan, it stars Masayuki Mori and Machiko Kyō, and is inspired by short stories by Ueda Akinari and Guy de Maupassant...

(1954), Satyajit Ray
Satyajit Ray
Satyajit Ray was an Indian Bengali filmmaker. He is regarded as one of the greatest auteurs of 20th century cinema. Ray was born in the city of Kolkata into a Bengali family prominent in the world of arts and literature...

's The Apu Trilogy (1955–1959), Guru Dutt
Guru Dutt
Vasanth Kumar Shivashankar Padukone , popularly known as Guru Dutt, was an Indian film director, producer and actor. He is often credited with ushering in the golden era of Hindi cinema...

's Pyaasa
Pyaasa
Pyaasa is a 1957 Indian film produced and directed by Guru Dutt. The film tells the story of struggling poet, Vijay , trying to make his works known in post-independence India...

(1957), and the Akira Kurosawa
Akira Kurosawa
was a Japanese film director, producer, screenwriter and editor. Regarded as one of the most important and influential filmmakers in the history of cinema, Kurosawa directed 30 filmsIn 1946, Kurosawa co-directed, with Hideo Sekigawa and Kajiro Yamamoto, the feature Those Who Make Tomorrow ;...

 films Rashomon
Rashomon (film)
The bandit's storyTajōmaru, a notorious brigand , claims that he tricked the samurai to step off the mountain trail with him and look at a cache of ancient swords he discovered. In the grove he tied the samurai to a tree, then brought the woman there. She initially tried to defend herself with a...

(1950), Ikiru
Ikiru
is a 1952 Japanese film co-written and directed by Akira Kurosawa. The film examines the struggles of a minor Tokyo bureaucrat and his final quest for meaning. The film stars Takashi Shimura as Kanji Watanabe.-Plot:...

(1952) and Seven Samurai (1954).

1960s-1970s


The 1960s brought politically driven dramas focusing on war, such as Judgment at Nuremberg
Judgment at Nuremberg
Judgment at Nuremberg is a 1961 American drama film dealing with the Holocaust and the Post-World War II Nuremberg Trials. It was written by Abby Mann, directed by Stanley Kramer, and starred Spencer Tracy, Burt Lancaster, Richard Widmark, Maximilian Schell, Werner Klemperer, Marlene Dietrich, Judy...

(1961), Flashback
Flashback (1969 film)
Flashback is a 1969 Italian drama film directed by Raffaele Andreassi. The film received many awards; Golden Globe's Foreign Press, Grolla Silver premium , Award of Tourism & Entertainment and Silverstar Festival San Francisco. It was entered into the 1969 Cannes Film Festival and was nominated...

(1969) and The Manchurian Candidate
The Manchurian Candidate (1962 film)
The Manchurian Candidate is a 1962 American Cold War political thriller film starring Frank Sinatra, Laurence Harvey, Janet Leigh and Angela Lansbury, and featuring Henry Silva, James Gregory, Leslie Parrish and John McGiver...

(1962). Sports dramas became inspiration such as The Hustler
The Hustler (film)
The Hustler is a 1961 American drama film directed by Robert Rossen from the 1959 novel of the same name he and Sidney Carroll adapted for the screen...

(1961) and Downhill Racer
Downhill Racer
Downhill Racer is a 1969 film and the first to be directed by Michael Ritchie. A drama about ski racing, it stars Robert Redford and Gene Hackman.Tagline: How fast must a man go to get from where he's at?-Plot:...

(1969).

During the 1970s, modern dramatic directors made some of their first films. Francis Ford Coppola
Francis Ford Coppola
Francis Ford Coppola is an American film director, producer and screenwriter. He is widely acclaimed as one of Hollywood's most innovative and influential film directors...

 directed The Godfather
The Godfather
The Godfather is a 1972 American epic crime film directed by Francis Ford Coppola, based on the 1969 novel by Mario Puzo. With a screenplay by Puzo, Coppola and an uncredited Robert Towne, the film stars Marlon Brando, Al Pacino, James Caan, Robert Duvall, Sterling Hayden, John Marley, Richard...

(1972). Martin Scorsese
Martin Scorsese
Martin Charles Scorsese is an American film director, screenwriter, producer, actor, and film historian. In 1990 he founded The Film Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to film preservation, and in 2007 he founded the World Cinema Foundation...

 directed Taxi Driver
Taxi Driver
Taxi Driver is a 1976 American drama film directed by Martin Scorsese and written by Paul Schrader. The film is set in New York City, soon after the Vietnam War. The film stars Robert De Niro and features Jodie Foster, Harvey Keitel, and Cybill Shepherd. The film was nominated for four Academy...

(1976), Mean Streets
Mean Streets
Mean Streets is a 1973 drama film directed by Martin Scorsese and written by Scorsese and Mardik Martin. The film stars Harvey Keitel and Robert De Niro. It was released by Warner Bros. on October 2, 1973...

(1973), and musical drama New York, New York
New York, New York (film)
New York, New York is a 1977 American musical-drama film directed by Martin Scorsese. It is a musical tribute, featuring new songs by John Kander and Fred Ebb as well as standards, to Scorsese's home town of New York City, and stars Robert De Niro and Liza Minnelli as a pair of musicians and...

(1977). Sylvester Stallone
Sylvester Stallone
Michael Sylvester Gardenzio Stallone , commonly known as Sylvester Stallone, and nicknamed Sly Stallone, is an American actor, filmmaker, screenwriter, film director and occasional painter. Stallone is known for his machismo and Hollywood action roles. Two of the notable characters he has portrayed...

 created one of the most successful sports drama franchises with Rocky
Rocky
Rocky is a 1976 American sports drama film directed by John G. Avildsen and both written by and starring Sylvester Stallone. It tells the rags to riches American Dream story of Rocky Balboa, an uneducated but kind-hearted debt collector for a loan shark in the city of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania...

(1976) and also directed the sequel Rocky II
Rocky II
Rocky II is a 1979 American film that is the sequel to Rocky, a motion picture in which an unknown boxer had been given a chance to go the distance with the World Heavyweight Champion. Sylvester Stallone, Carl Weathers, Tony Burton, Burgess Meredith, Burt Young and Talia Shire reprised their...

(1979). In addition, in sports drama were films that focused on the struggle of athletes such as Brian's Song
Brian's Song
Brian's Song is a 1971 ABC Movie of the Week that recounts the details of the life of Brian Piccolo , a Wake Forest University football player stricken with terminal cancer after turning pro, told through his friendship with Chicago Bears running back teammate and Pro Football Hall of Famer Gale...

(1970), and The Longest Yard (1974). War films and specifically World War II films were produced, giving the most realistic adaptation of the war seen in films at that time. Tora! Tora! Tora!
Tora! Tora! Tora!
is a 1970 American-Japanese war film that dramatizes the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, to the extent these facts were known at the time of production. The film was directed by Richard Fleischer and stars an all-star cast, including So Yamamura, E.G...

(1970), Patton
Patton (film)
Patton is a 1970 American biographical war film about U.S. General George S. Patton during World War II. It stars George C. Scott, Karl Malden, Michael Bates, and Karl Michael Vogler. It was directed by Franklin J. Schaffner from a script by Francis Ford Coppola and Edmund H...

(1970), and Apocalypse Now
Apocalypse Now
Apocalypse Now is a 1979 American war film set during the Vietnam War, produced and directed by Francis Ford Coppola. The central character is US Army special operations officer Captain Benjamin L. Willard , of MACV-SOG, an assassin sent to kill the renegade and presumed insane Special Forces...

(1979), which all show the trials and hardships of war, are still considered classic war films.

1980s-1990s


In the 1980s, dramatic film put emphasis on highly emotional themes. Do the Right Thing
Do the Right Thing
Do the Right Thing is a 1989 American dramedy produced, written, and directed by Spike Lee, who is also a featured actor in the film. Other members of the cast include Danny Aiello, Ossie Davis, Ruby Dee, Richard Edson, Giancarlo Esposito, Bill Nunn, and John Turturro. It is also notably the...

(1989), Spike Lee
Spike Lee
Shelton Jackson "Spike" Lee is an American film director, producer, writer, and actor. His production company, 40 Acres & A Mule Filmworks, has produced over 35 films since 1983....

's debut film, and The Color Purple
The Color Purple (film)
The Color Purple is a 1985 American period drama film directed by Steven Spielberg, based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name by Alice Walker. It was Spielberg's eighth film as a director , and was a change from the summer blockbusters for which he had become famous...

(1985) were full character studies of African American culture and history. War dramas again played a big part as Platoon
Platoon (film)
Platoon is a 1986 American war film written and directed by Oliver Stone and stars Tom Berenger, Willem Dafoe and Charlie Sheen. It is the first of Stone's Vietnam War trilogy, followed by 1989's Born on the Fourth of July and 1993's Heaven & Earth....

(1986) showed the horrors of Vietnam. Das Boot (1981) focused on the German viewpoint of World War II. Drama, with a science fiction edge was a theme when Steven Spielberg
Steven Spielberg
Steven Allan Spielberg KBE is an American film director, screenwriter, producer, video game designer, and studio entrepreneur. In a career of more than four decades, Spielberg's films have covered many themes and genres. Spielberg's early science-fiction and adventure films were seen as an...

 directed E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial
E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial
E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial is a 1982 American science fiction film co-produced and directed by Steven Spielberg, written by Melissa Mathison and starring Henry Thomas, Dee Wallace, Robert MacNaughton, Drew Barrymore, and Peter Coyote...

(1982), and Ridley Scott directed Blade Runner
Blade Runner
Blade Runner is a 1982 American science fiction film directed by Ridley Scott and starring Harrison Ford, Rutger Hauer, and Sean Young. The screenplay, written by Hampton Fancher and David Peoples, is loosely based on the novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by Philip K...

(1982), and also The Accused (1988).

During the 1990s, Goodfellas
Goodfellas
Goodfellas is a 1990 American crime film directed by Martin Scorsese. It is a film adaptation of the 1986 non-fiction book Wiseguy by Nicholas Pileggi, who co-wrote the screenplay with Scorsese...

(1990) took a gritty, hard-edged look at mob crime. The Shawshank Redemption
The Shawshank Redemption
The Shawshank Redemption is a 1994 American drama film written and directed by Frank Darabont and starring Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman....

(1994), which was set inside a prison, had strong themes of hope, as did the Holocaust-themed Schindler's List
Schindler's List
Schindler's List is a 1993 American film about Oskar Schindler, a German businessman who saved the lives of more than a thousand mostly Polish-Jewish refugees during the Holocaust by employing them in his factories. The film was directed by Steven Spielberg, and based on the novel Schindler's Ark...

(1993). Dramas also took a turn with existentialist thrillers such as Fight Club
Fight Club (film)
Fight Club is a 1999 American film based on the 1996 novel of the same name by Chuck Palahniuk. The film was directed by David Fincher and stars Edward Norton, Brad Pitt and Helena Bonham Carter. Norton plays the unnamed protagonist, an "everyman" who is discontented with his white-collar job...

(1999) and the tale of suburban angst American Beauty
American Beauty (film)
American Beauty is a 1999 American drama film directed by Sam Mendes and written by Alan Ball. Kevin Spacey stars as Lester Burnham, a middle-aged magazine writer who has a midlife crisis when he becomes infatuated with his teenage daughter's best friend, Angela...

(1999). Coming of age was dealt with in Good Will Hunting
Good Will Hunting
Good Will Hunting is a 1997 drama film directed by Gus Van Sant and starring Matt Damon, Robin Williams, Ben Affleck, Minnie Driver, and Stellan Skarsgård...

(1997), race relationships were a theme in American History X
American History X
American History X is a 1998 American drama film directed by Tony Kaye and starring Edward Norton and Edward Furlong. It was distributed by New Line Cinema....

(1998), and the AIDs epidemic and discrimination were the focus of Philadelphia
Philadelphia (film)
Philadelphia is a 1993 American drama film that was one of the first mainstream Hollywood films to acknowledge HIV/AIDS, homosexuality and homophobia. It was written by Ron Nyswaner and directed by Jonathan Demme. The film stars Tom Hanks and Denzel Washington...

(1993). Comedy-drama
Comedy-drama
Comedy-drama is a genre of theatre, film and television programs which combines humorous and serious content.-Theatre:Traditional western theatre, beginning with the ancient Greeks, was divided into comedy and tragedy...

 was featured with films like Forrest Gump
Forrest Gump
Forrest Gump is a 1994 American epic comedy-drama romance film based on the 1986 novel of the same name by Winston Groom. The film was directed by Robert Zemeckis, starring Tom Hanks, Robin Wright and Gary Sinise...

(1994), Jerry Maguire
Jerry Maguire
Jerry Maguire is a 1996 American romantic comedy-drama film starring Tom Cruise and Cuba Gooding, Jr. It was written, co-produced, and directed by Cameron Crowe...

(1996) and As Good as It Gets
As Good as It Gets
As Good as It Gets is a 1997 American romantic comedy film directed by James L. Brooks and produced by Laura Ziskin. It stars Jack Nicholson as a misanthropic, obsessive-compulsive novelist, Helen Hunt as a single mother with an asthmatic son, and Greg Kinnear as a gay artist. The screenplay was...

(1997). Child-oriented dramas also became more popular with titles such as The Lion King
The Lion King
The Lion King is a 1994 American animated film produced by Walt Disney Feature Animation and released by Walt Disney Pictures. It is the 32nd feature in the Walt Disney Animated Classics series...

(1994).

2000s


In the 2000s, biopics
Biographical film
A biographical film, or biopic , is a film that dramatizes the life of an actual person or people. They differ from films “based on a true story” or “historical films” in that they attempt to comprehensively tell a person’s life story or at least the most historically important years of their...

 such as Ali
Ali (film)
Ali is a 2001 American biographical film directed by Michael Mann. The film tells the story of boxing icon Muhammad Ali, played by Will Smith, from 1964 to 1974 featuring his capture as of the heavyweight title from Sonny Liston , his conversion to Islam, criticism of the Vietnam War, banishment...

(2001), Frida
Frida
Frida is a 2002 biographical film which depicts the professional and private life of the surrealist Mexican painter Frida Kahlo. It stars Salma Hayek in her Academy Award nominated portrayal as Kahlo and Alfred Molina as her husband, Diego Rivera....

(2002), 8 Mile (2002),Ray
Ray (film)
Ray is a 2004 biographical film focusing on 30 years of the life of rhythm and blues musician Ray Charles. The independently produced film was directed by Taylor Hackford and starred Jamie Foxx in the title role; Foxx received an Academy Award for Best Actor for his performance.Charles was set to...

(2004), Walk the Line
Walk the Line
Walk the Line is a 2005 American biographical drama film directed by James Mangold and based on the early life and career of country music artist Johnny Cash...

(2005) and Milk
Milk (film)
Milk is a 2008 American biographical film on the life of gay rights activist and politician Harvey Milk, who was the first openly gay person to be elected to public office in California, as a member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors...

(2008) have become popular among filmmakers. Gladiator
Gladiator (2000 film)
Gladiator is a 2000 historical epic film directed by Ridley Scott, starring Russell Crowe, Joaquin Phoenix, Connie Nielsen, Ralf Möller, Oliver Reed, Djimon Hounsou, Derek Jacobi, John Shrapnel and Richard Harris. Crowe portrays the loyal Roman General Maximus Decimus Meridius, who is betrayed...

(2000) is an epic dramatic film, along with The Last Samurai
The Last Samurai
The Last Samurai is a 2003 American epic drama film directed and co-produced by Edward Zwick, who also co-wrote the screenplay based on a story by John Logan. The film was inspired by a project developed by writer and director Vincent Ward, who had previously filmed the movie in 1990, starring...

(2003). The Gulf War and similar skirmishes were an inspiration for dramatic films in war drama movies like Black Hawk Down (2001) and Jarhead
Jarhead (film)
Jarhead is a 2005 biographical drama war film based on U.S. Marine Anthony Swofford's 1991 Gulf War memoir of the same name, directed by Sam Mendes, starring Jake Gyllenhaal as Swofford with co-stars Jamie Foxx, Peter Sarsgaard, and Chris Cooper. The title comes from the slang term used to refer to...

(2005). Despite the drop on popularity of the romantic dramas, some of them have enjoyed big box office and critical success, as the controversial groundbreaking Brokeback Mountain
Brokeback Mountain
Brokeback Mountain is a 2005 romantic drama film directed by Ang Lee. It is a film adaptation of the 1997 short story of the same name by Annie Proulx with the screenplay written by Diana Ossana and Larry McMurtry...

(2005) for example, that won several awards and Slumdog Millionaire
Slumdog Millionaire
Slumdog Millionaire is a 2008 British epic romantic drama adventure film directed by Danny Boyle, written by Simon Beaufoy, and co-directed in India by Loveleen Tandan. It is an adaptation of the novel Q & A by Indian author and diplomat Vikas Swarup...

(2008) is a critically acclaimed romantic drama film
Romance film
Romance films are love stories that focus on passion, emotion, and the affectionate involvement of the main characters and the journey that their love takes through courtship or marriage. Romance films make the love story or the search for love the main plot focus...

 that has been nominated for ten Academy Awards, and went on to win eight of them, including Best Picture.