Movies, Pop Culture

4 Period Piece Films You Should Watch For A Cozy Fall Night-In

top period piece movies

This article was written by The Zillennial Zine’s fall editorial intern Celeste MacMurray. Find her on Instagram at @clsmsanchezx. If you would like to share an article with The Zillennial, send us an email at

While October is prime time for Halloween activities and celebrations, we can’t forget its potential for fall fun. Preparing for the upcoming holiday brings a lot of joy, but if you want a break from spooky content and aren’t feeling up to it, fall festivities are always there to provide us with the comfort we need. There are so many films that are perfect for the fall season, but today we’re going to hone in on a specific subgenre.

Period pieces are known for their elegance and simplicity as they deeply tap into human emotion. We are able to catch glimpses of ourselves as humans through these stories, and since the ones listed are based on novels, it’s only a testament to their impact. If you’re looking for the top period piece movies to watch during a night-in, here’s just the list you need. Some of these films will make you think, some will make you laugh, while others might make you cry.

Pride and Prejudice (2005)

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As a certified comfort movie, Pride and Prejudice is the perfect watch for a night-in. The soundtrack is light and heartfelt, and the film features many scenic shots that immerse you fully in the English countryside. Based on the Jane Austen novel, this film follows the story of Elizabeth as she and her sisters navigate being in society as they try to find the perfect matches.  The Bennet family is comprised of only daughters, meaning there are no male heirs to inherit the property once Mr. Bennet passes. This is why it becomes even more important for the daughters to find a good match, but Elizabeth insists on marrying for love and love alone. We witness Jane’s romance with Mr. Bingley, but we also witness unknowingly how Elizabeth’s complicated relationship with Mr. Darcy grows from hate to understanding to love.

Little Women (2019)

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Directed by none other than Greta Gerwig, the 2019 film of Little Women takes such a tender approach in its portrayal of everyday domestic life and sisterhood. The film is based on the 19th century novels published by Louisa May Alcott that follow the sisters of the March family and detail their lives. The four sisters are, namely, Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy. Each woman has their own aspirations and dreams paired alongside their highly memorable personalities. They are all allowed to be their own person with their own wants and needs all while exploring the bond between sisters and how it carries you through the years.

Emma (2020)

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Have you ever seen the 1995 movie Clueless and adored every second of it? What if I were to tell you that Clueless is actually a modern adaptation based on Jane Austen’s novel, Emma? The titular character of Emma is none other than Emma Woodhouse—a clever and savvy young woman who tries to make new friends and gets herself caught up in matchmaking in turn. As another Regency-era novel, the story follows the life of Emma Woodhouse and her best friend, Harriet Smith, as the two navigate society, love and potential marriages. Emma is swept up in her own romance as it develops into the film’s sweet and heartwarming ending.

Anna Karenina (2012)

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If you want a movie that will leave you shocked and maybe with some tears, consider watching Anna Karenina for its twists and turns. The film is based on Leo Tolstoy’s novel, and Anna Karenina’s story is one full of drama, love and scandal following her separation from her husband for another man. She is shunned by the rest of aristocratic society for this as her mental health deteriorates in response. The direction of this film is experimental and artistic with its representation of society as a theater play where everyone is constantly being watched. Confronting the idea of women and desire and the idea of propriety, Anna Karenina is an emotional ride from start to finish as we witness her marriage, her tumultuous affair and the chain of events that follow.

What are your top period piece movies to watch? Let us know in the comments!

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