British actor Kate Winslet is among the most beautiful women to grace cinema…
And yes, she has great acting abilities that have helped her to become one of the top notch actors of our times.
Winslet made an early start aged 15 by bagging a role in the British television series Dark Season (1991). But she was overweight, at 84 kg, and it was only a chance remark about her weight during the filming of another which got her to slim down.
She was chosen from a total of 175 girls to play a murderess in Peter Jackson’s New Zealand presentation Heavenly Creatures, her first breakthrough. She was so intense in the film that she was traumatised by the role.
Titanic was released in 1997 and the rest became history.
She won many accolades and established herself firmly in cinema. She loved experimenting and took on challenging roles.
Here are some of her films which show her remarkable range:
Heavenly Creatures (1994)
Cast: Melanie Lynskey, Kate Winslet, Sarah Peirse, Diana Kent, Simon O’Connor
Director: Peter Jackson
This psychological crime drama deals with two young girls, 13-year-old Juliet Hulme (Winslet) from a wealthy family and 14-year-old Pauline Parker (Lynskey) from a working class background. They are brought together due to childhood diseases and isolation treatment in hospital.
As time goes by, the two girls strike a bond and fantasise about a Fourth World where music and art are celebrated. The two are separated when Juliet’s family go abroad but they keep in touch. The fantasy world begins to take precedence and finally Pauline’s mother is murdered by the two of them. The film won a lot of recognition and awards.
Sense and Sensibility (1995)
Cast: Emma Thompson, Hugh Grant, Kate Winslet, Alan Rickman, Hugh Laurie
Director: Ang Lee
Thompson’s award-winning screenplay of the Jane Austin novel deals with the life and times of Dashwood women who are forced to leave their mansion after Mrs Dashwood loses her husband. She along with her daughters Elinor (Thompson), Marianne (Kate Winslet) and Margaret (Emilie Francois) live in a modest cottage where the drama of their lives is played out.
There is love, disappointment, betrayal and revenge as the three sisters cope with the complexities of life. Will their unhappy lives change or will they wallow in the miseries they are subjected to? Winslet was nominated for Best Supporting Actress at the Academy Awards.
Cast: Geoffrey Rush, Kate Winslet, Joaquin Phoenix, Michael Caine, Billie Whitelaw
Director: Phillip Kaufman
The plot deals with Marquis de Sade (Rush) and his time in a mental asylum, overseen by Abbe du Coulmier (Phoenix). The Marquis has written some stuff which he smuggles out through a laundress Madeleine (Winslet) to a publisher. His latest work becomes a hit but Napoleon orders them to be destroyed.
But Napolean’s adviser suggests that Dr Royer-Collard (Caine) assess the Marquis. Madeleine is fascinated by the Marquis but she resists his advances. The Abbe teaches Madeleine to read and write and also falls in love with her. Dr Royer-Collard marries a young girl which prompts the Marquis to write a farce. But secrets began to tumble and things get violent.
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)
Cast: Jim Carrey, Kate Winslet, Kirsten Dunst, Mark Ruffalo, Elijah Wood, Tom Wilkinson
Director: Michel Gondry
This science fiction romantic story deals with the soft-spoken Joel (Carrey) and free spirit Clementine (Winslet) meet on a train from Montauk to Rockville Centre and connect despite their contrasting natures. Later they realise that both had shared a relationship a few years ago but that had been erased from their memories.
Clementine hires a company Lacuna to do the job for her. Joel hears of this and does the same, the procedure taking place when he sleeps and the erasure starting with their parting ways. The last memory of Clementine is asking him to Montauk. Will they hitch up again?
Finding Neverland (2004)
Cast: Johnny Depp, Kate Winslet, Dustin Hoffman, Julie Christie, Radha Mitchell
Director: Marc Forster
This fantasy film deals with the story of writer J M Barrie and his close but platonic relationship with a family which led to him to creating the character Peter Pan. Barrie (Depp) spends most of his time with the widowed Sylvia (Winslett) and her four boys – George, Jack, Peter and Michael.
He is like a father to the boys and they go off on adventures and have fun. They boys don’t want to grow up, particularly Peter on whom Barrie writes a play. But Sylvia is struck down by a mystery illness and cannot make it to the show. However, Barrie stages an abridged version at home. Then Sylvia dies and everybody is at the funeral. The film was well received and has won many awards.