The best Elizabeth Taylor movies are worth revisiting with all the talk about an upcoming movie of her life. These are 7 of the best Elizabeth Taylor films in a career that ranges from serious literature to frivolous camp.
National Velvet (1944): A young girl and her horse win the big race with coaching from an ex-jockey (Mickey Rooney). Taylor even got to keep the horse. This best Elizabeth Taylor movie is a great family film.
A Place in the Sun (1951): A poor factory worker (Montgomery Clift) dates a woman on the assembly line while hoping to break into high society. When a rich girl (Elizabeth Taylor) falls for him, he contemplates how to get rid of his pregnant girlfriend. It’s adapted from Theodore Dreiser’s An American Tragedy.
Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958): A heavy-drinking ex-football player (Paul Newman) neglects his wife (Elizabeth Taylor) during a family reunion at the home of his dying Big Daddy (Burl Ives). Tennessee Williams and Newman were disappointed by the differences between the film and the original play, but it’s still a great work.
Suddenly, Last Summer (1959): A doctor (Montgomery Clift) is called in to treat a disturbed young woman (Elizabeth Taylor). Her cousin died mysteriously and his mother (Katherine Hepburn) harbors a dark secret. It may be the closest a film has ever stuck to a Tennessee William’s screenplay.
BUtterfield8 (1960): Even though she’s on record for hating this film, Elizabeth Taylor won a Best Actress Oscar as a playgirl who tries to settle down with one socialite (Laurence Harvey). There’s no happy ending in this film based on the John O’Hara short story.
Who’s Afraid of Virginia Wolf (1966): This could be the finest Elizabeth Taylor movie of all time so there’s no questioning her second Oscar win here. The junior faculty may regret accepting an invitation for a nightcap from a middle-aged professor and his wife (Richard Burton, Taylor) who take marital discord to a new extreme. It’s based on Edward Albee’s play.
Malice in Wonderland (1985): Gossip columnists Louella Parsons (Taylor) and Hedda Hopper (Jane Alexander) compete for top place. These 2 great actresses elevate this funny made-for-TV movie.
Maybe Angelina Jolie or Catherine Zeta-Jones will play the lead role in the film of Sam Kashner and Nancy Schoenberger’s book Furious Love: Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton, and the Marriage of the Century. In any case, the best Elizabeth Taylor movies are great entertainment.