7.0/10
35,985
206 user 177 critic

Happy-Go-Lucky (2008)

Trailer
2:05 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $3.99 on Prime Video

ON DISC
A look at a few chapters in the life of Poppy, a cheery, colorful, North London schoolteacher whose optimism tends to exasperate those around her.

Director:

Mike Leigh

Writer:

Mike Leigh
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 39 wins & 60 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Another Year (2010)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A look at four seasons in the lives of a happily married couple and their relationships with their family and friends.

Director: Mike Leigh
Stars: Jim Broadbent, Ruth Sheen, Lesley Manville
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

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.

Director: Mike Leigh
Stars: Timothy Spall, Lesley Manville, Ruth Sheen
Vera Drake (2004)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Abortionist Vera Drake finds her beliefs and practices clash with the mores of 1950s Britain--a conflict that leads to tragedy for her family.

Director: Mike Leigh
Stars: Imelda Staunton, Jim Broadbent, Heather Craney
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A successful black woman discovers that her birth mother is an underprivileged white woman, but the woman denies it. As emotions run high, everyone's secrets are exposed.

Director: Mike Leigh
Stars: Timothy Spall, Brenda Blethyn, Phyllis Logan
Career Girls (1997)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

2 young women reunite and rekindle their friendship after having said goodbye at their college graduation, six years earlier.

Director: Mike Leigh
Stars: Katrin Cartlidge, Lynda Steadman, Kate Byers
Life Is Sweet (1990)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A shop assistant, her cook husband, & their twin daughters ponder their lives over a few weeks in a working-class suburb north of London.

Director: Mike Leigh
Stars: Alison Steadman, Jim Broadbent, Claire Skinner
High Hopes (1988)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

The life of a working class couple living in London and their complicated relationships with other members of the family.

Director: Mike Leigh
Stars: Phil Davis, Ruth Sheen, Edna Doré
Topsy-Turvy (1999)
Biography | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

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.

Director: Mike Leigh
Stars: Jim Broadbent, Allan Corduner, Dexter Fletcher
Mr. Turner (2014)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

An exploration of the last quarter century of the great, if eccentric, British painter J.M.W. Turner's life.

Director: Mike Leigh
Stars: Timothy Spall, Paul Jesson, Dorothy Atkinson
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Sally Hawkins ... Poppy
Elliot Cowan ... Bookshop Assistant
Alexis Zegerman ... Zoe
Andrea Riseborough ... Dawn
Sinead Matthews ... Alice (as Sinéad Matthews)
Kate O'Flynn ... Suzy
Sarah Niles ... Tash
Eddie Marsan ... Scott
Joseph Kloska ... Suzy's Boyfriend
Sylvestra Le Touzel ... Heather
Anna Reynolds Anna Reynolds ... Receptionist
Nonso Anozie ... Ezra
Trevor Cooper ... Patient
Karina Fernandez ... Rosita Santos
Philip Arditti ... Flamenco Student
Edit

Storyline

Poppy Cross is happy-go-lucky. At 30, she lives in Camden: cheeky, playful, frank while funny, and talkative to strangers. She's a conscientious and exuberant primary-school teacher, flatmates with Zoe, her long-time friend; she's close to one sister, and not so close to another. In this slice of life story, we watch her take driving lessons from Scott, a dour and tightly-wound instructor, take classes in flamenco dance from a fiery Spaniard, encounter a tramp in the night, and sort out a student's aggressive behavior with a social worker's help. Along the way, we wonder if her open attitude puts her at risk of misunderstanding or worse. What is the root of happiness? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The one movie this fall that will put a smile on your face.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

MK2 [France] | Momentum Pictures [UK] | See more »

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 November 2008 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Happy Go Lucky See more »

Edit

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

£385,190 (United Kingdom), 20 April 2008, Limited Release

Opening Weekend USA:

$73,867, 12 October 2008, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$3,494,485, 18 January 2009
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Sally Hawkins and Alexis Zegerman became good friends during filming. Hawkins invited Zegerman along to the 66th Golden Globe Awards ceremony, on the eve when she eventually won for her performance in this film. See more »

Goofs

In the build up to the final (aborted) driving lesson Scott (Eddie Marsan) is seen turning right into Holloway road (half way up and heading north), then moments later they are seen navigating the Highbury and Islington roundabout, turning into again into Holloway road about half a mile south of the previous location. See more »

Quotes

Title Card: [first lines]
Poppy: [pulls out book from shelf] The Road to Reality...
[smiles and pushes the book back]
Poppy: Don't wanna be going there!
[laughs]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Film 2017: Episode #44.4 (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

ABC
Written by Freddie Perren, Fonce Mizell (as Alphonso Mizell), Deke Richards and Berry Gordy
Published and Licensed Courtesy of Jobete Music Co Inc/EMI Music Publishing
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Maybe the world is too much for even the most dedicated optimist?
23 April 2008 | by seawalkerSee all my reviews

Some UK critics have been saying that "Happy-Go-Lucky" is the happiest and most cheerful movie that Mike Leigh has ever made. Well, I don't know if I would exactly agree with that. It is and it isn't.

Sally Hawkins' primary school teacher Poppy is, indeed, a very happy individual. Annoyingly happy, insanely cheerful, depressingly optimistic and psychotically 'Up!', most of the time. It is a tribute to Sally Hawkins performance that, once you get past the initial irritation with her, you completely fall in love with Poppy, her goodness, her openness and, yes, her simple niceness.

Then there is Eddie Marsan's driving instructor Scott. Scott is the very antithesis of happy. Scott is rigid, angry, frustrated, impatient, knotted up and racist. A borderline OCD sufferer, who is tortured by who-knows-what in his past. Scott is the most bitter and overwhelming character in a Mike Leigh film since David Thewlis' Johnny in "Naked". It is a towering performance by Eddie Marsan.

If Poppy is the light, Scott is definitely the dark, but it seemed to me that dark shadows inhabit the whole of "Happy-Go-Lucky". The unhappy schoolboy, the glum Sister, the other sister - a social climber who dominates her husband. Little vignettes of irritation and annoyance. Typical Mike Leigh.

"Happy-Go-Lucky" is a really good film, if you stick with it. I liked the way that Poppy does stop smiling towards the end. Maybe the world is too much for even the most dedicated optimist?


106 of 150 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 206 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending TV Series With Prime Video

Explore popular and recently added TV series available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed