Movies about Eleanor The Eleanor Roosevelt Story (1965)

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Movies about Eleanor
The Eleanor Roosevelt Story (1965)
Assembled three years after the subject's death, the Oscar-winning The Eleanor Roosevelt Story is a reverent documentary of one of the most influential--and controversial--first ladies in American history. Family photographs are utilized to trace the courtship between the shy Eleanor and her outgoing cousin Franklin Delano Roosevelt. We watch as Eleanor becomes a major public figure in her own right, from her tireless support of her husband during his 1921 bout with infantile paralysis through her twelve years in the White House. Special attention is paid Mrs. Roosevelt's activities on behalf of civil rights, at a time when it was considered unfashionable (and politically suicidal) to take such stands. The documentary concludes with footage of the widowed Eleanor's tenure as a delegate to the United Nations. You may have seen the clips in The Eleanor Roosevelt Story elsewhere, but they're still worth a glance from both those who remember this remarkable woman and those to whom she has heretofore been merely a hazy name from the past. The film is narrated by Archibald MacLeish, Eric Sevareid and Francis Cole.

~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide

Eleanor: First Lady of the World (1982)

Jean Stapleton stars as Eleanor Roosevelt in this made-for-TV biography, first telecast May 12, 1982. The film recounts Mrs. Roosevelt's life after the 1945 death of her husband, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. At the request of new president Truman, Eleanor serves as a United Nations delegate, spending much of her time tilting with dedicated anti-FDR politico John Foster Dulles (E.G. Marshall). She goes on to spearhead the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, proving to Dulles--and to Soviet delegate Freddie Jones--that she's anything but soft on Communism. The winning teleplay for Eleanor: First Lady of the World was by Caryl Ledner and Cynthia Mandenberg. ~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide

Eleanor Roosevelt: A Restless Spirit (A&E Home Video)
Part of the Biography television series from A&E, this documentary reviews the career and personal life of Eleanor Roosevelt.

Her tremendous participation in twentieth century politics, as a high-profile first lady, impacted widespread issues, including feminism and civil rights, public policy and social work, and international peace relationships with the United States. Eleanor's father was the younger brother of President Theodore Roosevelt.

In 1905 she married Franklin Roosevelt. She joined the Red Cross during World War I and visited wounded veterans in the hospital, a morale-boosting practice she continued throughout her life. In 1920, Eleanor joined the League of Women Voters, an organization devoted to the advancement of women's political initiatives, and for which Eleanor made her first public speeches. In 1922, she joined the Women's Trade Union League and the Women's Division of the Democratic State Committee, where she befriended numerous leading activists. Among the issues she pursued were expanding the role of women in politics, denouncing anti-segregation policy in the South and creating anti-lynching legislature in cooperation with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).

Following Franklin's death in 1945, and at the request of President Harry S. Truman, Eleanor became a U.S. delegate for the United Nations. She remained devoted to improving awareness and international policies towards civil and human rights issues. ~ John Patrick Sheehan, All Movie Guide

American Experience: Eleanor Roosevelt (PBS Home Video, 2000)
She was the first president's wife to testify before a Congressional committee, to hold press conferences, to speak before a national party convention, to write a syndicated column, to be a radio commentator, and to earn money as a lecturer. For more than 30 years, Eleanor Roosevelt was the most powerful woman in America. To admirers, she was a woman with immense moral and physical courage, while detractors criticized her socialist leanings and her "overreaching" role as first lady. Rare home movies and the voice recordings of Eleanor Roosevelt herself are interwoven with recollections from her closest surviving friends and relatives. Civil rights leaders and leading historians examine her legacy and outline her story, from her painfully shy beginnings to the familiar rise of her political partnership with Franklin Roosevelt and her dedication to social equality, as well as lesser known aspects of her life such as her battle with depression, her contentious relationship with former Associated Press reporter Lorena Hickock, and her equally curious friendships with men. American Experience: Eleanor Roosevelt goes beyond the White House years where, after FDR's death, Eleanor remained a powerful figure in national politics. ~ Brooke Hodess, All Movie Guide

Soul of Iron with Jean Stapleton is available at ERVK (

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