By Ann Silverthorn
Kate Winslet became a household name in 1997, when she starred in Titanic at the age of 22. Now in her early forties, she owns roles in more than 40 movies. Over the past couple of decades, the English actress has often gravitated toward independent films, even turning down roles in future blockbusters such as Shakespeare in Love, which grossed nearly $300 million in 1999.
Winslet has played historic, contemporary, and futuristic characters during her career. Her movie credits range from animated features to dark satire. Often taking on raw roles, she’s appeared in more than a few nude scenes, with the uncommon quality of making them seem necessary.
Here’s a list of the 10 most rented Kate Winslet movies, some of which you might not have heard of, but are well worth watching. A more extensive list of the 30 Kate Winslet movies that DVD Netflix members have rented most appears at the end of this post.
What happens when a capital-punishment opponent ends up on death row himself? In this drama, David Gale, a University of Austin professor, convicted of murder, decides to tell his story to a reporter (Winslet) days before his date with the electric chair. The journalist believes Gale has been framed and races against the clock to find the real killer. Will she solve the mystery in time, or will Gale’s fate further his cause?
Among all the personas Kate Winslet has assumed over the years, few of them could quite be called animated. In Flushed Away, she’s quite animated (literally) and even witty and comedic. In this Dreamworks and Aardman Animations feature, Winslet plays a feisty sewer rate boat captain, Rita, who can chart the course out of the sewers to return society-mouse Roddy (Hugh Jackman), back home to his posh London flat. Rita expects payment, though, and in the meantime, evil threats loom over the subterranean society of Ratropolis.
First in the series based on the popular science-fiction novels, Divergent employs Kate Winslet as Jeanine Matthews, a commanding leader of the dominant faction in a dystopian society in which citizens are placed into categories based on their inclinations and innate talents. This works well--except when there’s the odd duck who doesn’t neatly fit into one slot, and in this case, it’s Tris, played by Shailene Woodley. Jeanine and Tris enter a battle of wits that threatens to upset the entire system.
Set in a Massachusetts suburb, Little Children explores a world in which couples have lost their intimacy within their marriages and begin looking elsewhere for fulfillment. Kate Winslet plays Sarah Pierce, whose aspirations for a doctoral degree were interrupted by marriage and motherhood. Quite the opposite, neighbor Brad’s wife expects him to pursue a career as an attorney, a goal he does not share. Kate and Brad begin to fill their empty hearts with each other, while a convicted sex offender disturbs the order in their quiet community.
What do you do when people are getting sick around the world, and no one knows why? Is it germ warfare? Contagion takes place over a four-month period, from Patient One and onward to a pandemic. In the meantime, panic ensues and the effects of anarchy combine with death and devastation as Dr. Erin Mears (Winslet) and her colleagues unravel a mystery and race to develop a vaccine.
In The Reader, Winslet plays a closed-off, unapproachable character in post-WWII Germany. Hanna has a dark reason to be guarded, but when she helps an ill teenaged boy she encounters on a tram, she’s forced to let that guard down. After the young man recovers and seeks her out to pay his gratitude, the two fall into a passionate love affair, accompanied by his reading novels to her. He senses she has a secret, but what is it?
Earning a best-actress nomination for this futuristic film, Winslet plays a young woman who undergoes a procedure to forget her former love interest, played by Jim Carrey. His character decides to do this as well, but then changes his mind. Is it too late, though?
It’s all about keeping up appearances in a 1950s suburb, where the husbands go off to work in the city every day, and the women mind the home fires. Unfortunately, Winslet’s character, April Wheeler, is unsatisfied and unhappy, and her humdrum husband, Frank (Leonardo DiCaprio), has little patience for her complaints. When Frank decides to make a dramatic career change, April comes alive again, but her joy is short-lived, and the result is tragic.
When a story is beloved and timeless, as is Peter Pan, it’s intriguing to peek behind the curtain at the circumstances that inspired the writer. Finding Neverland, set in 1903 London, tells the story of how the iconic tale came to be. The author, J.M. Barrie, is a playwright down on his luck who encounters a widow (Winslet) and her four young sons in a park. Barrie (Johnny Depp) is somewhat childlike and bonds with three of the boys, while the other, Peter, keeps his distance, grieving the death of his father.
The Holiday is not only the most-rented Kate Winslet movie, it’s also one of DVD Netflix's most-rented movies from 2006. Cameron Diaz stars opposite Winslet in this romantic comedy about two women in need of a change of scenery after recent man troubles. They find it’s not so easy to leave their problems behind, though, as they swap homes in England and America. Facing insults to their sensibilities and identities, each is faced with the decision to make profound changes to her life.
Listed below are 30 of Kate Winslet’s movies ranked by rental popularity. One would think that Titanic would make the top ten, but it sits at 19. Perhaps that is because there are just so many outstanding Winslet films to choose from. For example, her first film, Heavenly Creatures (1994), the true story of a hideous New Zealand murder, makes it clear why Winslet’s career has been so long lasting. It didn’t make the top 30, and neither did Hideous Kinky (1999), featuring Winslet as a rebellious mother who runs off to Morocco with her two young daughters. Both are well worth adding to your DVD.com queue.
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
The Life of David Gale
All the King’s Men
The Divergent Series: Insurgent
Sense and Sensibility
Deep Sea: IMAX
The Mountain Between Us
A Little Chaos
Romance & Cigarettes