Last Updated on April 22, 2017
Willow and Thatch hopes that by offering her voice, research and organizational skills, she can create – with your help – a really terrific resource for what to watch when you wish to soak in the loveliness of another era.
The natural place to start to build the ultimate period films list seemed to be with the Georgian era (1714 to 1837) and the sub-period Regency era (1811 to 1820), as that is where we find many of our favorites, like adaptations of Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. Right now, that list is well underway and the Victorian era (1837 to 1901).list is starting to take shape, and then the and Edwardian era (1901 to 1914) list will follow. Both are filled with suggestions for independent films, television mini-series, PBS, BBC, and Masterpiece Theatre productions to watch. The films contain the date they were first released, a description, the names of the major actors, and most have reviews and additional production notes.
There is the question of how best to group films into other, non era-specific lists. Perhaps a Family Friendly Period Dramas list would be helpful? A top 100 period dramas index (based on the best of Willow and Thatch’s carefully compiled period film DVD library)? A list dedicated to period dramas that take place in England or the U.K.? And how late should the lists run, into the 1960s? What kind of information do you want to, or not want to, see in a list? The plan is to make a selection of lists, all carefully researched and accurate, and only include films that you will enjoy. There can also be period lists with documentaries, reality-based period shows, heritage pieces and historical docudramas.
Your suggestions as to individual films to add, about what lists to make, and what details they should contain, would be most welcome and sincerely appreciated. Let’s make this the best Period Films List available, with top and favorite films alongside little known, obscure and foreign gems.
This list is for you, and Willow and Thatch will endeavor to please. Let me know your thoughts by adding a comment below?
UPDATE: Currently The Tudor and Stuart Eras, Georgian and Regency Eras, Victorian Era, Edwardian Era, Family Friendly, Christmas Classics and BBC Classic Drama Collection lists are active and are linked below.
More costume dramas and additional eras and theme based lists are being added every day, and your suggestions are still most helpful, just comment below.
You can always see what has been included in The Period Films List here.
A list of films that take place during the Tudor era (1485 – 1603) and the Stuart era (1603 to 1714). Includes the Elizabethan, Jacobean, Caroline, (Interregnum) and Restoration periods. Covers the reigns of Queen Elizabeth I (The Virgin Queen), King Henry VII, King Henry VIII, King Edward VI, Queen Mary I.
A list of films set during the Georgian era (1714 to 1837) and the sub-period Regency era (1811 to 1820). Jane Austen adaptations. The Georgian era of British history is a period which takes its name from, and is normally defined as spanning the reigns of the first four Hanoverian kings of Great Britain who were all named George: George I, George II, George III and George IV. The era covers the period from 1714 to 1830, with the sub-period of the Regency defined by the Regency of George IV as Prince of Wales during the illness of his father George III. The definition of the Georgian era is often extended to include the short reign of William IV, which ended with his death in 1837.
A list of films that take place during the reign of Queen Victoria: Victorian era (1837 to 1901). American Civil War.
A list of films set during the reign of King Edward VII, 1901 to 1910, and beyond Edward’s death to include the four years leading up to World War I: Edwardian era (1901 to 1914).
A list of films available that were included as part of the BBC Classic Drama Collection of costume dramas: PBS Masterpiece Theatre productions, BBC television mini-series, romances mostly set in the England, UK in the Georgian, Regency, Victorian and Edwardian eras. Willow and Thatch believes this to be the full list of the 71 DVDs (across 37 titles) that were originally part of the subscription. You can read about the collection here.
A list of movies that are Family Friendly and take place during the Tudor era, Stuart era, Georgian / Regency eras, Victorian era, Edwardian era, First World War, Interwar, Second World War, and beyond. Costume period dramas filmed in England, UK and other countries set in that time period that are safe for children to watch, with family values. Television mini-series, PBS, BBC, Masterpiece Theatre productions, historical dramas, heritage films, movies based on classic books and literature. Jane Austen adaptations.
A list of best period drama movies for Christmas. Costume dramas that take place around or celebrate the Christmas holiday. Timeless classics, all-time Christmas favorite films, top family friendly and Christian faith-based movies, that take place during the Victorian era, Edwardian era, First World War, Interwar, Second World War, and beyond. Period dramas filmed in England, UK and other countries set in that time period that are safe for children to watch, with family values. Made for television, historical dramas, romantic comedies, feel good films, movies based on classic books and literature.
Susan PietrantoniJuly 25, 2020 at 3:36 pm (3 years ago)
I would like to receive the Period Drama newsletter Thank youReply
Eileen L O 'HanlonFebruary 22, 2020 at 4:38 pm (3 years ago)
I just love this period ani wish I could be there for about six months to really see for my self what is was likeReply
MeganMay 16, 2019 at 8:53 pm (4 years ago)
For Family Friendly: Time after TIme on amazon primeReply
DianaJuly 17, 2018 at 2:35 pm (5 years ago)
Do you have a list of films with happy endings? I’ve just been watching Jane Austen on endless loop. And Vanity Fair is so pretty but always bums me out, so I’ve decided to stick with uplifting. I see your family friendly, but I guess that is different from happy.Reply
Willow and ThatchJuly 17, 2018 at 4:42 pm (5 years ago)
There is one in the works, but for now, do see the Family Friendly list. You’ll probably discover something there. How about watching The Importance of Being Earnest?
KrisDecember 26, 2016 at 2:55 am (6 years ago)
WWI – WWII list would be much appreciated!Reply
mitha s.April 27, 2016 at 9:41 am (7 years ago)
wow… i love the lists you make! I love watching almost all of them..Reply
WW list, please…
Willow and ThatchApril 27, 2016 at 11:15 am (7 years ago)
Thanks so much! The WWII list is in the works – just takes awhile – but it will be here.
Alice H.March 9, 2016 at 4:55 pm (7 years ago)
Great blog! I found this through the old Enchanted Serenity blog. If this is continuing that blog’s work, Medieval and Ancient Period Drama sections would be much appreciated.Reply
Willow and ThatchMarch 9, 2016 at 5:52 pm (7 years ago)
Hi Alice – So nice you found your way here. While the two sites aren’t related, Willow and Thatch will have a list for Medieval films too. It’s on the to-do list! For now, have a look at the Dark and Middle Ages Films for 2016 post as well as the Medieval Films Streaming on Netflix post.
EruanneNovember 6, 2015 at 11:43 am (7 years ago)
Showtime’s The Tudors? Kind of a big one…Reply
Willow and ThatchNovember 6, 2015 at 1:52 pm (7 years ago)
It’s there in the Best Period Dramas: Tudor & Stuart Eras List – but I accidentally named it just Tudors…I’ll fix that now, thanks for catching it.
Jenni BrummettOctober 26, 2015 at 5:46 pm (7 years ago)
A Family Friendly list would be great. If it’s relevant, I would appreciate more information about films set in the U.S. What about a list of houses (castles, estates, etcetera) or towns used as settings in the film that one can actually visit today? Taking armchair travel to the next level. 🙂Reply
Willow and ThatchOctober 27, 2015 at 9:52 am (7 years ago)
Hi Jenni – The Best Period Dramas: Family Friendly list is coming together nicely, you can see it here. For this list in particular, it would be most helpful to have community input, as every family has their own ideas on what is suitable viewing for the whole family. As far as the idea of a list of castles and towns to visit today, I’m with you on that! I’m not sure if it will work as a list, but I’ve started work on this and plan to write individual posts about places to visit that were period film and costume drama locations. For now, you may want to check out the Willow and Thatch Pinterest board Period Film Locations and Stories: Dramas (Real manors, country houses, castles & locations in best period dramas. Sets, behind the scenes. Discussion, articles on different adaptations of literary works…) You’ll also find a board on Period Film Dress: Costume Dramas and of course all kinds of other lovely period inspired things for the home, garden and you.
Maria VoughtSeptember 22, 2015 at 5:54 pm (8 years ago)
I love this concept! Thank you for all the work you do!Reply
Willow and ThatchSeptember 22, 2015 at 6:08 pm (8 years ago)
Thank you 🙂 I am just about to add more period dramas to the lists and your comment has given me a little lift…it is indeed a lot of work but hopefully word will spread about the site, so many can benefit from it.
Patti BSeptember 21, 2015 at 3:44 pm (8 years ago)
Please start a Facebook page?Reply
Willow and ThatchSeptember 21, 2015 at 6:44 pm (8 years ago)
Hi Patti – Will do so soon! Thank you for asking and welcome. You can also subscribe to Willow and Thatch here on the site.
Willow and ThatchSeptember 23, 2015 at 2:36 pm (8 years ago)
The Willow and Thatch Facebook page is up and running at https://www.facebook.com/periodfilms