The Best Period Romance Dramas To Watch After Streaming Queen Charlotte

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If you're anything like us, you've probably already rewatched "Queen Charlotte: A Bridgerton Story" a few times since it was released. Created by the queen of chemistry, the Shonda Rhimes series follows the early formative years of Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz's marriage to King George III. A tale of young love and acceptance, the spin-off has captured the hearts of its wide audience.

However, the romance obsession didn't start with the release of the show – the Bridgerton series, in conjunction with BookTok, has increased public interest in the romance genre. While smutty modern romances dominate book readership, period romances are often displayed on-screen.

The subtlety of affection depicted in a longing glance or hands that brush as lovers walk by sucks us into the past and makes us forget the inaccuracies shown on screen — like how everyone has a British accent, even if they're not English. Plus, it doesn't hurt that the films and shows are typically filled with lush scenery and extravagant costumes. If you're looking to be transported to the past, read ahead to discover the best period romance dramas you should watch.

Becoming Jane

If we had a nickel for every time James McAvoy was found being downright sexy in a library, we'd have two nickels — but aren't we blessed to be able to witness such a sight twice? Although "Atonement" is an obvious choice, we suggest "Becoming Jane," which is based on the real-life romance between a young Jane Austen and Tom Lefroy, an Irish law student. Lefroy's non-aristocratic status and Austen's distinguished standing is a barrier for the two young lovers, creating a tale of forbidden romance. The chemistry between Anne Hathaway and James McAvoy in this coming-of-age tale is positively electric.

Watch on: Apple TV

Pride and Prejudice (1995)

A decade before the now iconic "Pride and Prejudice" 2005 adaptation was released came the 1995 mini-series. While the former's legendary status can't be contested, the 1995 release starring Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle is an exceptional version of the 1813 novel. Comprised of six episodes, the series format allows the story to be fleshed out further, letting the audience savor the burgeoning connection between Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet. The Regency-era romance is filled with humorous verbal sparring, great costuming, and grand declarations of love — all components of the perfect period romance.

Watch on: Hulu and Prime Video

The Great

Hulu's "The Great" is irreverent and dark, subverting the historical romance trope in favor of satire and vulgarity. Like "Queen Charlotte," the series is a retelling of a queen's coming-of-age following the beginnings of Catherine's arranged marriage to Peter the Great. Played by Elle Fanning and Nicholas Hoult, respectively, the duo's love-hate relationship is the star of the show. The show also pokes fun at historical romances, reveling in the ridiculousness of the genre by taking liberties with the truth.

Watch on: Hulu

The Handmaiden

A psychological thriller set in 1930s Korea during the Japanese occupation, "The Handmaiden" follows a Korean con man who seeks to defraud a Japanese heiress (Kim Min-hee) with the help of an orphaned crook (Kim Tae-ri). This Park Chan-Wook masterpiece grapples with sexuality's dual nature as a tool for both empowerment and abuse. Filled with head-spinning twists and turns, the actors' sizzling passion couples with lush cinematography as the movie explores themes of autonomy, female desire, and the liberating power of choice.

Watch on: Amazon Prime and Vudu


Based on the true story of Dido Elizabeth Belle, Gugu Mbatha-Raw gives a powerful performance as the titular character in "Belle," who was influential in helping bring slavery to an end in 18th-century England. The mixed-race illegitimate daughter of a royal naval captain and enslaved woman, Belle struggles with finding her place in society. Raised by her father's extended family, she benefited from her social standing but was not fully privileged due to her racial background. However, she finds love and acceptance in a vicar's son, portrayed by Sam Reid.

Watch on: HBO Max, Hulu, and Prime Video

Sylvie's Love

Set in 1950's Harlem, Sylvie (Tessa Thompson) becomes acquainted with Robert (Nnamdi Asomugha), a young saxophonist who's working at her father's record shop. Like love at first sight, the two instantly connect over their shared appreciation for music. As Robert's music career begins to take off, the young pair find their paths diverging, only to connect once again. With an abiding love unaltered by time, Sylvie and Robert must now contend with their adult responsibilities in "Sylvie's Love" as they decide whether true love is worth the sacrifice.

Watch on: Prime Video

Still Star-Crossed

What is a Shonda Rhimes production without political intrigue, perfect chemistry, and forbidden romance? A continuation of the end of "Romeo and Juliet," the series "Still Star-Crossed" explores a future where the Montagues and Capulets try to rectify their mistakes. It follows Rosalie Capulet (Lashana Lynch) and Benvolio Montague's (Wade Briggs) plot to save their fair Verona. Although the two find themselves arguing about nearly everything, their shared duty brings them closer together. However, don't fall too in love with this pair — "Still Star-Crossed" was canceled after one season.

Watch on: Apple TV and Prime Video

Anna Karenina (2012)

Like many romance films, "Anna Karenina" has all the markers of a perfect movie — an alluring cast, great costuming, and a sweeping soundtrack. Yet, what sets it apart is the director's decision to film most of the movie on a single stage. The cinematography lends to the torrid affair between 19th-century Russian aristocrat Anna Karenina (Keira Knightley) and Count Vronsky (Aaron Taylor-Johnson), representing the pressure they face to play a part amidst their growing passion. A visual masterpiece, "Anna Karenina," addresses the conflict between desire and duty.

Watch on: Apple TV and Prime Video

Mr. Malcolm's List

Zawe Ashton stars as Julia Thistlewaite in the Regency-era rom-com "Mr. Malcolm's List." Stung by the rejection of the discerning Mr. Malcolm (Sope Dìrísù), she enlists her friend Selina Dalton (Freida Pinto) to fulfill the unending qualities that Mr. Malcolm desires in a wife, detailed in his infamous list. As the hoax goes on, the lines drawn in the fake romance between Mr. Malcolm and Selina begin to blur. An ode to novelist Jane Austen's classic blend of love and satire, Zawe Ashton shines in this humorous tale of revenge and romance.

Watch on: Hulu, Prime Video, and Showtime


The CW show "Reign" chronicles the beginnings of Mary, Queen of Scots' life in the French royal court. After being raised in a convent throughout her childhood, Mary (Adelaide Kane) is rushed to France, where the young man she was promised to, Prince Francis (Toby Regbo), awaits. However, her connection with his illegitimate half-brother poses an issue to the political plotting that created her destiny. Still young herself, Mary must navigate the scandals, secrecy, and plotting of court while learning to listen to her own heart.

Watch on: The CW and Prime Video

Lady Chatterley's Lover (2022)

An adaptation of D.H. Lawrence's 1928 classic novel, the Netflix production of "Lady Chatterley's Lover" stars Emma Corrin of "The Crown" as Connie Chatterley, an aristocratic woman who's fed up with the monotony of her life. Married to a man who uses a wheelchair, the real ailment in their marriage comes from Sir Clifford Chatterley's cold and unfeeling nature after his accident. Lady Chatterley soon begins a relationship with Oliver (Jack O'Connell), the couple's gamekeeper. A passionate and erotic affair unfolds, one that awakens a deeper need in Lady Chatterley.

Watch on: Netflix

Jane Eyre (2011)

A far cry from the brightness of Bridgerton, this adaptation of Charlotte Brontë's famed novel "Jane Eyre" is a gothic and brooding story. Played by Mia Wasikowska, the titular character leaves her abusive childhood in search of independence. She finds herself working as a governess for Mr. Rochester, depicted by Michael Fassbender, a cold and withholding man. As time passes by, their friendship transforms into a deep passion. As they grow closer together, Mr. Rochester's penchant for secrecy puts Jane in a difficult position, forcing her to learn the importance of staying true to herself.

Watch on: Prime Video and Apple TV

Interview with the Vampire

A remake of Anne Rice's novel and the 1994 film "Interview with the Vampire," the AMC production has a format that jumps between past and present, illustrated by Louis de Pointe de Luc's (Jacob Anderson) interview with a journalist about his romance with Lestat de Lioncourt (Sam Reid) in 1910's New Orleans. The two share a complex relationship, filled with toxicity and bloodlust. The show does gothic horror and erotic tension well — while it's clear the relationship between the two men is anything but healthy, the chemistry is palpable.

Watch on: YouTube TV and Prime Video

Sense and Sensibility

This Ang Lee gem, the director of "Brokeback Mountain," is an adaptation of Jane Austen's 1811 novel "Sense and Sensibility." After the death of their father, Elinor and Marianne Dashwood, played by Emma Thompson and Kate Winslet, are relegated to poverty with no male family members to gain their inheritance. The comedic film displays the duo's divergent approaches to love and life. As the eldest, Elinor is bound by responsibility. Meanwhile, Marianne favors desire over logic. Humorous and heartfelt, the movie showcases the drawbacks of both sensibility and sentimentality.

Watch on: Apple TV and Prime Video