Who likes Sally Hawkins? Pretty much everyone if they’re at all into historical feminist films! She’s been one of the “it” girls of the historical film genre for going on 20 years, unafraid of pretty much anything when it comes to challenging roles and movies that push boundaries.
We really need to do an updated full review on this groundbreaking lesbian historical frock flick based on the novel by Sarah Waters.
Sally Hawkins plays Mary Shelley, and only gets one weird, dowdy dress in a film loaded with fabulous costumes.
I love Jim Broadbent, so this one is going on the watch list immediately!
Vera Drake (2004)
A film about a woman who performs abortions in 1950s London (played by Imelda Staunton). Sally Hawkins plays the daughter of one of Vera’s employers. Trigger warning, this film deals with rape and violence against women.
Another Sarah Waters novel film adaptation that we really should get around to doing a full review of. Sally Hawkins plays a different character in this from the one she played in Tipping the Velvet.
Twenty Thousand Streets Under the Sky (2005)
Based on a semi-autobiography tribology by Patrick Hamilton, the series details a love triangle in 1930s London between Bob, Ella, and Jenny. Sally Hawkins plays Ella, the barmaid nursing an unrequited crush on Bob, whilst he fritters away his money on Jenny, a prostitute, whom he believes he has fallen in love with.
HG Wells’ War with the World (2006)
A miniseries based on HG Wells’ life. Sally Hawkins plays Rebecca West.
This film looks gorgeous, but I’m still worried it’s going to depress me. Sally Hawkins’s scenes were apparently deleted from the film, but I did find this image which shows her.
My favorite Jane Austen novel, and I still haven’t managed to watch this adaptation yet. Sally Hawkins plays Anne Elliot, the heroine on the cusp of spinsterhood, when an old suitor returns to her life.
An Education (2009)
A coming-of-age story set in London in the early 1960s. Sally Hawkins plays Sarah Goldman, the wife of an older man in a creepy affair with a teenager. Thinking I’ll be taking a hard pass on this one.
Made in Dagenham (2010)
Sally Hawkins plays Rita O’Grady in a film based on the the Ford sewing machinists strike of 1968 demanding equal pay for women.
Sally Hawkins plays Mrs. Reed, Jane’s abusive aunt, in this adaptation of Charlotte Brontë’s novel.
Great Expectations (2012)
Sally Hawkins plays Mrs. Joe, Pip’s awful older sister in the adaptation of the Charles Dickens’ classic.
Sally Hawkins plays Eleanor, Duchess of Gloucester, in this acclaimed miniseries based on Shakespeare’s Henriad plays. The costuming was kind of special, but points for making it weird.
A biographical film about Canadian folk artist Maud Lewis, set in Nova Scotia in the 1930s. Sally Hawkins plays Maud.
The Shape of Water (2017)
Monster and girl meet, fall in love. I hate to admit it, but I really wasn’t as in love with this film as the rest of the world seemed to be, but it was visually striking for sure.
What’s your favorite of Sally Hawkins’ historical costume roles?