Watch The Butler Online

The Butler

Where to Watch The Butler


The Butler from 2013 is an epic historical drama film directed by Lee Daniels and produced by Laura Ziskin and Pamela Oas Williams. Based on the real-life account of Eugene Allen, as first reported by journalist Wil Haygood, this film revolves around the character of Cecil Gaines, an African American who serves as a butler at the White House for over three decades. Backed by an impressive cast list, the movie features Forest Whitaker in the pivotal role of the butler, supported by Oprah Winfrey, John Cusack, and a host of other leading actors.

On its outset, The Butler takes you through the life of Cecil Gaines, who hailing from the segregated South, endures the harsh realities of racism in his childhood. Following a series of unfortunate events, he escapes the toxic environment and gets trained by an elderly servant, resulting in a transformation from a run-away to a sophisticated domestic help. Daniels manages to capture this journey of survival and transformation with finesse, highlighting not just the protagonist's personal growth but giving glimpses into the wider socio-political context too.

Forest Whitaker delivers a compelling performance as he portrays a young maître d' who joins the White House as a butler and eventually serves seven U.S. presidents. His character adds a personal touch to historical events, and his relationship with several residents of the White House manifests a unique perspective on the United States' tumultuous history. Alongside Whitaker, Oprah Winfrey as Cecil's devoted yet self-determined wife Gloria, provides a strong supporting performance. In this role, Winfrey offers a stark contrast to Whitaker’s reserved character, their pronounced differences driving the narrative forward in this significant historical backdrop.

John Cusack as Richard Nixon is another noteworthy performance in the film, as are the portrayals of other presidents and White House figures by Robin Williams, James Marsden, Alan Rickman, Liev Schreiber, and several others. The actors breathe life into these historical personalities by beautifully reenacting their complexities in dealing with the then brewing civil rights movements, the Vietnam War, and other defining events in American history.

The character of Cecil Gaines is the centerpiece of the narrative, intriguingly caught in the crossfire of historical change. On one hand, he is battling the racial discriminations within the supposedly neutral and universally respected space of the White House. On another, his personal life is torn apart because of the differing political ideologies within his family. The Butler, therefore, is not just a retelling of American history but is superbly intertwined with a touching narrative of familial love, disputes, and reconciliation.

Given its historic background, the technical aspects of the movie deserve a mention too. It beautifully captures the passage of time and transformation, including changes in fashion, dialogue, and lifestyle, adding authenticity to the storytelling. Director Lee Daniels effectively alternates between Cecil's experiences inside the opulent White House and the harsher realities of the times witnessed by his son Louis (impressively portrayed by David Oyelowo).

The Butler stands out due to its ability to sketch an intimate portrait of America's political history through the lens of one humble man's epic journey. The film weaves separate strands of familial angst, political upheaval, and personal transformation, and stitches together a narrative that is engrossing and enlightening. It reminds the audience of the personal narratives that run parallel to significant historical events, adding depth and emotion to pages of a dry history book.

All in all, The Butler is a fascinating blend of cinematic storytelling, historical events, and strong performances from its star-studded ensemble. It is a movie that provides its audience with an indelible character study, a glimpse into America's complex political history and a somber reflection on racial discrimination and civil rights movement. It provokes thought, triggers emotion, and stands testament to the power cinematic retellings can wield over real-life events and personalities. It is ideal for those who enjoy character-driven dramas and are keen on understanding American history from a fresh, humanized perspective.

The Butler is a Drama movie released in 2013. It has a runtime of 132. Critics and viewers have rated it moderate reviews, with an IMDb score of 7.2. It also holds a MetaScore of 65.

How to Watch The Butler

Where can I stream The Butler movie online? The Butler is available to watch and stream, buy on demand, download at Amazon Prime, Peacock Premium, Amazon, Google Play, YouTube VOD. Some platforms allow you to rent The Butler for a limited time or purchase the movie for downloading.

Lee Daniels
John Cusack, Forest Whitaker, Lenny Kravitz
The Butler is available on .