Entertainment

The Best Costume Drama Movies  

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2.8k votes 204 voters 22k views 157 items

List Rules Vote for your personal favorite Costume drama films, regardless of how popular or successful they were at the box office.

A list of the best costume drama movies ever made, ranked by film fans' votes -- many of which are streaming on Netflix or Amazon Prime. This list is ordered by popularity, so only the greatest movies about costume drama are at the top of the list. This list contains all the top costume dramas, like Joan of Arc or Madame Bovary, but if there are any great films you think we missed, please feel free to add them yourself. 

The films on this list are the most famous costume drama movies of all time, so use it to find some movies that you haven't seen already if you're a fan of the genre.

This list answers the questions, "What are the best costume drama movies?" and "What is the greatest costume drama movie of all time?" and contains items like Cleopatra, The Bastard.

Various bits of information are included with these popular costume movies, such as who directed them, when they were released and who starred in the films. So from the latest, to the greatest costume drama movies, here is the full costume drama movies list, ordered from best to worst.

Costume drama movies have been directed by some pretty famous names, including Kevin Costner and Orson Welles.

list ordered by
1
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Clark Gable, Vivien Leigh, Olivia de Havilland
Gone with the Wind is a 1939 American epic historical romance film adapted from Margaret Mitchell's Pulitzer-winning 1936 novel. It was produced by David O. Selznick of Selznick International ...more
2
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PietraChandlerRadcliff added Tyrone Power, Norma Shearer, John Barrymore
Marie Antoinette is a 1938 film produced by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. It was directed by W. S. Van Dyke and starred Norma Shearer as Marie Antoinette. Based upon the 1932 biography of the ill-fated ...more
3
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Kate Winslet, Hugh Laurie, Emma Thompson
Sense and Sensibility is a 1995 British–American period drama film directed by Ang Lee and based on Jane Austen's 1811 novel of the same name. Actress Emma Thompson wrote the script and stars as ...more
4
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Jeffrey Jones, Cynthia Nixon, Christine Ebersole
Amadeus - Directors Cut is a 1984 biography drama film written by Peter Shaffer and directed by Milos Forman.
5
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Cate Blanchett, Daniel Craig, Lily Allen
Elizabeth is a 1998 biographical film written by Michael Hirst, directed by Shekhar Kapur, and starring Cate Blanchett in the title role of Queen Elizabeth I of England, alongside Geoffrey Rush, ...more
6
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PietraChandlerRadcliff added Gene Tierney, Tyrone Power, George Sanders
Son of Fury: The Story of Benjamin Blake is a 1942 adventure film directed by John Cromwell, starring Tyrone Power and Gene Tierney. The film was adapted from Edison Marshall's 1941 historical ...more
7
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PietraChandlerRadcliff added Tyrone Power, Basil Rathbone, Linda Darnell
The Mark of Zorro is a 1940 American adventure film directed by Rouben Mamoulian and produced by Darryl F. Zanuck for 20th Century Fox. The action movie stars Tyrone Power as Don Diego Vega, ...more
8
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Audrey Hepburn, Rex Harrison, Jeremy Brett
My Fair Lady is a 1964 American musical film adaptation of the Lerner and Loewe stage musical of the same name based on the 1938 film adaptation of the original 1913 stage play Pygmalion by ...more
9
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Michelle Pfeiffer, Uma Thurman, Keanu Reeves
Dangerous Liaisons is a 1988 historical drama film based upon Christopher Hampton's play Les liaisons dangereuses, which in turn was a theatrical adaptation of the 18th-century French novel Les ...more
10
Kingdom of Heaven is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Costume Drama Movies
Eva Green, Liam Neeson, Edward Norton
Kingdom of Heaven is a 2005 epic historical drama directed and produced by Ridley Scott and written by William Monahan. It stars Orlando Bloom, Eva Green, Jeremy Irons, David Thewlis, Brendan ...more
11
The Ten Commandments is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Costume Drama Movies
Charlton Heston, Vincent Price, Yul Brynner
The Ten Commandments is a 1956 American religious epic film produced and directed by Cecil B. DeMille, shot in VistaVision, and released by Paramount Pictures. It dramatizes the biblical story ...more
12
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PietraChandlerRadcliff added Cesar Romero, Tyrone Power, Lee J. Cobb
Captain from Castile is a historical adventure film released by 20th Century Fox in 1947. Directed by Henry King, the Technicolor film starred Tyrone Power, Jean Peters, and Cesar Romero. Shot ...more
13
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Laurence Olivier, Greer Garson, Maureen O'Sullivan
Pride and Prejudice is a 1940 American film adaptation of Jane Austen's novel Pride and Prejudice, directed by Robert Z. Leonard and starring Greer Garson and Laurence Olivier. The screenplay ...more
14
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PietraChandlerRadcliff added Myrna Loy, Tyrone Power, Joseph Schildkraut
The Rains Came is a 1939 20th Century Fox film based on an American novel by Louis Bromfield. A remake of the film was released in 1955 under the name The Rains of Ranchipur. The film was ...more
15
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PietraChandlerRadcliff added The Mississippi Gambler Anita Ekberg, Tyrone Power
The Mississippi Gambler is a 1953 American adventure film directed by Rudolph Maté. The film was nominated for an Academy Award for Sound Recording.
16
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Lucy Hall added Charlton Heston, Jack Hawkins, Hugh Griffith
Ben-Hur is a 1959 American epic historical drama film, directed by William Wyler, produced by Sam Zimbalist for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and starring Charlton Heston, Stephen Boyd, Jack Hawkins, Hugh ...more
17
Gladiator is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Costume Drama Movies
Russell Crowe, Joaquin Phoenix, Michael Sheen
Gladiator is a 2000 American-British epic historical drama film directed by Ridley Scott, starring Russell Crowe, Joaquin Phoenix, Connie Nielsen, Ralf Möller, Oliver Reed, Djimon Hounsou, ...more
18
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PietraChandlerRadcliff added Tyrone Power, Loretta Young, Annabella
Suez is an American film released on October 28, 1938 by 20th Century Fox, with Darryl F. Zanuck in charge of production, directed by Allan Dwan and starring Tyrone Power, Loretta Young and ...more
19
The Current War is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Costume Drama Movies
Benedict Cumberbatch, Michael Shannon, Nicholas Hoult
The Current War is a 2017 American biographical historical film (2019 US theatrical release) directed by Alfonso Gomez-Rejon. The dramatic story of the cutthroat race between electricity titans ...more
20
Harriet is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Costume Drama Movies
Cynthia Erivo, Leslie Odom Jr., Joe Alwyn
Harriet is a 2019 American biographical film directed by Kasi Lemmons, based on the life of abolitionist Harriet Tubman. Harriet Tubman (Cynthia Erivo) escapes slavery and leads hundreds of ...more
21
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Keira Knightley, Ralph Fiennes, Hayley Atwell
The Duchess is a 2008 British-American drama film directed by Saul Dibb. It is based on Amanda Foreman's biography of the 18th-century English aristocrat Georgiana Cavendish, Duchess of ...more
22
Lloyds of London is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Costume Drama Movies
Blanche2 added Lloyds of London Tyrone Power, Madeline Carroll, C
23
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Kirk Douglas, Laurence Olivier, Tony Curtis
Spartacus is a 1960 American epic historical drama film directed by Stanley Kubrick. The screenplay by Dalton Trumbo was based on the novel Spartacus by Howard Fast. It was inspired by the life ...more
24
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Ryan O'Neal, Leonard Rossiter, Hardy KrĂ¼ger
Barry Lyndon is a 1975 British-American period drama film written, produced, and directed by Stanley Kubrick, based on the 1844 novel The Luck of Barry Lyndon by William Makepeace Thackeray. It ...more
25
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Omar Sharif, Peter O'Toole, Alec Guinness
Lawrence of Arabia is a 1962 British epic adventure drama film based on the life of T. E. Lawrence. It was directed by David Lean and produced by Sam Spiegel. The film stars Peter O'Toole in the ...more