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
Mike Leigh asked the actors to hum in the movie. Because they couldn't afford to buy rights to songs, the actors had to hum something generic. See more »
Vera's sister-in-law Joyce says she wants a washing machine which costs "25 pounds." Until decimalization in 1971, most luxury goods, like washing machines and men's suits, were priced in guineas, not pounds (one guinea = one pound one shilling, or one pound five pence in decimal). Some stores, particularly those wishing to appeal to the middle class or aspiring to a degree of 'poshness', priced items in pounds. Throughout the 1960s most domestic items were priced in pounds, shillings, and pence. Services and professions continued to charge in guineas until much later. In the film, an abortion costs two guineas. 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 »
It's not entertainment but...this is an extraordinary piece of work.
I went to see Alexander on a Wednesday night and Vera Drake the night after and what a contrast! A story that means something, characters that feel rough and real in your hands like worn stones in an old pathway, and above all film making with a purpose with no effort to dazzle just inform.
It's not perfect, but this is the kind of imperfection all of us in Hollywood should strive for.
A word about the art direction too. I remember the 50's in England and yes it was just like that - I remember my parents kitchen being that dismal and green, and yes English people and English families can be that incommunicative, and yes they sat in front of the fire and talked about the war and the Blitz and yes we would sit in the parlour on Christmas day and eat off a table just like that.
There. I've shared secrets with you. Now go and see this and keep crap like Alexander off the screens.
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