Penny's love for her partner, taxi-driver Phil, has run dry. He is a gentle, philosophical guy, and she works on the checkout at a supermarket. Their daughter Rachel cleans in a home for ... See full summary »
Slice-of-life look at a sweet working-class couple in London, Shirley and Cyril, his mother, who's aging quickly and becoming forgetful, mum's ghastly upper-middle-class neighbors, and ... See full summary »
Just north of London live Wendy, Andy, and their twenty-something twins, Natalie and Nicola. Wendy clerks in a shop, leads aerobics at a primary school, jokes like a vaudevillian, agrees to... See full summary »
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
The film process took about a year; the actors all met individually with Mike Leigh, discussing their characters' lives (from birth up until the moment the film starts), and began to rehearse together when their characters met one another. See more »
Vera's sister-in-law Joyce says she wants a washing machine which costs "twenty five pounds". Until decimalization in 1971, most luxury goods (such as washing machines and men's suits) were priced in guineas not pounds. Interestingly, in the film the cost of the abortion is expressed as two guineas.
(One guinea = one pound one shilling, equivalent to one pound five pence in decimal.)
This was true for some outlets, particularly those wishing to appeal to the middle class or those aspiring to a degree of 'poshness'. Throughout the 1960s most domestic items were priced in £.s.d or Pounds, shillings and pence. Services and professions continued to charge in guineas as an affectation until much later. 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 »
One observation: When the police arrive at the home of Vera Drake (Imelda Staunton) to confront her about the allegation that she has been conducting illegal abortions, she and her family are celebrating her daughter's engagement. When the cops enter the room, the camera freezes on Vera's face. Over the course of about 45 seconds in which she doesn't say a word, Staunton's face registers every possible emotion: Joy, confusion, concern, fear, disgust, anger, guilt. It's heart-racing just to watch, and it's what acting -- great acting at least -- is all about. Staunton's is the one female performance of the year not to miss. (On the men's side, check out Morgan Freeman in MILLION DOLLAR BABY.)
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