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Subject: Historical Figures

The (usually) great women and men whose exploits have been recorded somewhere by someone provide the base for biographical stories, figures such as Genghis Khan, Ibn Battuta, and Wu Zetian.

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  • Director: Brian Helgeland
  • Release Date: 2013
  • Production Country: United States

During a time when the white man was considered to be the ultimate human achievement and that racial segregation was the natural order of things in the United States, African American Jackie Robinson was recruited to be the first "colored" player to play baseball in the all-white Major League. Dealing with racism both in the dugout and on the field and hostile fans everywhere he went, Robinson proved a compelling argument for the idea that all men are created equal–though some play better baseball than others.

A Dangerous Method

  • Director: David Cronenberg
  • Release Date: 2011
  • Production Country: United Kingdom, Germany, Canada. Switzerland

As the world is on the brink of war, two psychologists, Sigmund Freud and Carl Jung, debate the make-up of the human psyche and how best to treat its dysfunctions, but both men are distracted by the presence of the beautiful and insightful Sabina Spielrein, their fellow psychologist who becomes more than just another patient to them both.

A Man for All Seasons

  • Director: Fred Zinnemann
  • Release Date: 1966
  • Production Country: United Kingdom

A principled and devout man, Sir Thomas More finds himself on the wrong side of the argument when King Henry VIII is determined to divorce not only his current wife, but the church that refuses to allow him to set her aside. But the King looks to get Sir More's approval, one way or another.

Abraham Lincoln

  • Director: D.W. Griffith
  • Release Date: 1930
  • Production Country: United States

The infamous director D.W. Griffith takes on both the myth of Lincoln and a new technology: sound in movies.

Agora

  • Director: Alejandro Amenábar
  • Release Date: 2009
  • Production Country: Spain

In 4th-century pagan Alexandria, Hypatia chooses the independent life of a scientist over marriage to Orestes and is a successful teacher for many years. But as Christianity slowly takes over the city, Hypatia's scientific studies lead to her being charged of witchcraft and, when Orestes, himself now a Christian, hesitates to have her condemned as a witch, the mob takes the matter into their own hands, leaving only a Christian slave whom Hypatia freed years earlier to save her.

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