Top Ten Renaissance Films

Poll Results: Here are the most popular period dramas set during the Renaissance after tallying up everyone's votes.
Thanks to all who took part!
(3000 votes cast in all)

Six of the top 10 dramas are based on Shakespeare - 5 of them based on his works while one is a fictional account of a doomed love affair which inspired one of his plays. Three of the dramas are based on the Tudors - 2 of King Henry VIII and the other of his daughter Elizabeth I. And the final film, sitting on top as the most-watched film from this era is a retelling of Cinderella that has a special place in our hearts ♥

#1 Ever After: A Cinderella Story (1998)
Drew Barrymore and Dougray Scott
(viewed by 92% of voters)

#2 Shakespeare in Love (1998)
Gwyneth Paltrow and Joseph Fiennes
(viewed by 90% of voters)

#3 Elizabeth (1998)
Cate Blanchett, Joseph Fiennes, Geoffrey Rush
(viewed by 75% of voters)(tie)

#3 Romeo and Juliet (1996)
Leo DiCaprio & Claire Danes
(viewed by 75% of voters)(tie)

#5 The Other Boleyn Girl (2007)
Natalie Portman, Scarlett Johannson, Eric Bana
(viewed by 63% of voters)

#6 Much Ado About Nothing (1993)
Kenneth Branagh, Robert Sean Leonard, Emma Thompson,
Keanu Reeves, Denzel Washington, Michael Keaton, Kate Beckinsale
(viewed by 60% of voters)

#7 The Tudors (2007-10)
Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Maria Doyle Kennedy, Natalie Dormer,
Sam Neill, James Frain, Henry Cavill, Jeremy Northam...
(viewed by 58% of voters)

#8 Romeo and Juliet (1968)
Leonard Whiting & Olivia Hussey
(viewed by 53% of voters)

#9 A Midsummer Night's Dream (1999)
Kevin Kline, Michelle Pfeiffer, Rupert Everett,
Calista Flockhart, Christian Bale, Dominic West
(viewed by 51% of voters)

#10 Hamlet (1996)
Kenneth Branagh, Derek Jacobi, Julie Christie,
Kate Winslet, Nicholas Farrell, Richard Briers
(viewed by 47% of voters)

See original post on Renaissance Dramas
See dramas from other eras


  1. mel gibson did the best Hamlet I have ever seen. I finally got what the play was really all about.

  2. Ever After...hokey but really great. I eat this stuff up!

    And Shakespeare in Love, that one I can watch at least once a year (more?)

  3. @grams
    Glad to know that adaptation spoke to you so well!

    @Jenny Allworthy
    I'm jealous that you get to watch your movies so often. My DVD's just gather dust and I've been dying to watch so many including Ever After and Shakespeare in Love!

  4. Allright I'm going to be a bit nitpicky here but Romeo + Juliet is certainly not Renaissance it's a 100% modern adaption of Shakespeare's play. I havn't seen Hamlet (1996) but it looks like it's set in the Edwardian era, the same goes for A Midsummer Night's Dream (1999), which has a Victorian/Edwardian setting. In fact the original play isn't even set during the renaissance but in ancient Greece. The other two up there are set in the renaissance but they don't have to be. That's the brilliance of Shakespeare's (best) works, they are timeless. Even though they were written 400 years ago they can be set now, 100 years ago or even 2000 years ago.

  5. @Anonymous
    You're right! They're not all strictly set in that era but the original list I used to sort these placed them there and I think it's nice to keep Shakespeare's films listed here even though they might have very modern settings!

  6. @Cheryl
    I do pull my faves out when I'm not feeling well. Miss Potter was my "medicine" for a killer migraine last week. That's when I dust the oldies off. I also sometimes catch parts of old ones on TV if my hubby flicks by and sees one that we both like. Last night was A Knight's Tale on Bravo I think, but we couldn't stay up for the last half. I always say things know, we have this on DVD...



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