What are the best movies about real people on DVD? Check out today's Ask the Critic question, then post your own

By Ken Tucker
October 11, 2006 at 04:00 AM EDT
Coal Miner's Daughter: Everett Collection

What are the best biopics on DVD?

Other than “Ray” and “Wilde” (my faves), what do you think represents the best of the bio genre? — Teresa

Wow, Teresa, there are so many good ones on DVD (and your pick of the 1997 Oscar Wilde biopic starring Stephen Fry shows you to be quite a connoisseur). To take just a few: Earlier this year Criterion Collection put out a beautiful version of John Ford’s Young Mr. Lincoln (1939), starring Henry Fonda as Abe. I’ve always had a soft spot for Coal Miner’s Daughter (1980), with Sissy Spacek as Loretta Lynn. Martin Scosese’s tumultuous Raging Bull (1980), with Robert DeNiro as fighter Jake LaMotta, is a movie that transcends the film-biography category, as does David Lean’s great epic Lawrence of Arabia (1962), with Peter O’Toole. These just scratch the surface, of course — you could take a full week off from work and have a Biopic Festival.