In a poor working class London home Penny's love for her partner, taxi-driver Phil, has run dry, but when an unexpected tragedy occurs, they and their local community are brought together, and they rediscover their love.
Set in the 1880s, the story of how, during a creative dry spell, the partnership of the legendary musical/theatrical writers Gilbert and Sullivan almost dissolves, before they turn it all around and write the Mikado.
Vera Drake is a selfless woman who is completely devoted to, and loved by, her working class family. She spends her days doting on them and caring for her sick neighbor and elderly mother. However, she also secretly visits women and helps them induce miscarriages for unwanted pregnancies. While the practice itself was illegal in 1950s England, Vera sees herself as simply helping women in need, and always does so with a smile and kind words of encouragement. When the authorities finally find her out, Vera's world and family life rapidly unravel. Written by
Sujit R. Varma
Despite Mike Leigh's reputation, the film's budget was so tight that they ran out of money close to the end of shooting. Leigh and the cast rehearsed for another week before shooting restarted. See more »
When Sid and his friends are dancing, the music features blaring trumpets. A shot of the band shows only the saxophone and trombone players playing, while the the trumpet player taps his toes. The music also seems to be coming from a much larger band. See more »
Hello George, only me. How are you going today?
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After the end credits it says: "In loving memory of my parents, a doctor and a midwife." See more »
"Vera Drake" is one of those movies that takes you right in and does not release you until long after the movie is over. Come to think of it, most of Mike Leigh's movies have this effect.
Imelda Staunton is flawless as Vera Drake, a kind-hearted simple soul who believes in sharing the compassion and the caring for her own family with others. Part of this compassion is exemplified in a skill she has - she is a back street abortionist. She does not do it for financial gain, but out of sympathy for the helpless women who cannot afford the psychiatric evaluations given to the rich who are then sent to private nursing homes for the procedures.
Through a series of circumstances she is caught and convicted and we observe the effects on her family and those about her.
Everything is flawless about this film. We really are in the cramped little flat where Vera lives, in the near slum environment. Her cheerful domestic work in the wealthy homes of London is in stark contrast to the poverty of her own post war rationed existence.
This film and the actors have to be nominated for many Oscars. Mike Leigh you have done it again. Bravo! 9 out of 10.
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