Woman In Gold is the remarkable true story of a woman who overcame great odds with the help of an improbably young lawyer, and righted a wrong that had stood for decades. Sixty years after fleeing Vienna during World War II, Maria Altmann (Helen Mirren), an elderly Jewish woman, begins a journey to reclaim family possessions seized by the Nazis. Among them is Gustav Klimt’s famous painting, Portrait of Adele Bloch Bauer I, a portrait of her beloved Aunt Adele, which has become a national treasure: an Austrian Mona Lisa.
Maria discovers a letter in her late sister’s possessions concerning unsuccessful attempts to recover five Klimt paintings which had belonged to her family, all of which now hang in Austria’s famous Belvedere Gallery. Believing she has a case for restitution and with a repressed desire for retribution stirring, she seeks advice from a young lawyer Randy Schoenberg (Ryan Reynolds), the son of fellow Austrian immigrants.
Having just started at a big law firm and with a newborn child at home, Randy is wary of burdening himself with such an unlikely extracurricular case. The lure of the famous paintings and an increasing sense of duty to his heritage overcome him, however. Inexperienced but plucky, Randy’s investigation reveals there may have been a systematic cover-up, and denial on a national scale, in order to keep the paintings in Austria.
Together, Maria and Randy embark upon a lengthy legal battle, taking them all the way to the heart of the Austrian establishment and the U.S. Supreme Court. The journey forces Maria to confront vivid memories of her happy family life in Vienna, reliving the pain of having everything she holds dear ripped away from her and the nerve-wracking escape that saw her emigrate to the U.S. with her husband Fritz. The arduous legal battle sees Randy gain skill and experience, which helps Maria ultimately win the paintings back, an uplifting but bittersweet victory in the light of all that was lost.
Woman In Gold is the moving and powerful real-life story of someone coming to terms with their past and seeking restitution for what was taken from her.