Monday, 23 March 2015

Funny, Moving, Sensational. Philomena Is The DVD Tip Of The Month

The movie Philomena is one of the shining lights of the film year 2013 which brings us the gripping, heart-touching search of a mother who lost her son in the 1950s. She has kept her past a secret ever since and lived with a burden of a lifetime. The award-winning British drama, directed by Stephen Frears, is based on the true story ‘The Lost Child of Philomena Lee’, a biography written by BBC journalist Martin Sixsmith.

The movie centres on Philomena Lee (Dame Judi Dench) who has held a burden all of her life. As a teenager in the mid-50s, pregnant Philomena lived at a convent in Roscrea, Ireland. The nuns allowed her to keep the child but she was later forced to sign away her parental rights to the Catholic Church. Three years on, Philomena’s son is adopted by an American couple and taken away, leaving no trace behind.

Ever since, Philomena never stopped thinking of her son and attempted to find him, but failed. By this time, she has a 35-year-old daughter, who introduces her to ex BBC journalist Martin Sixsmith (Steve Coogan). Once again, hope springs in Philomena to finally reunite with her son and find out what has happened to him all those years ago.

The intense drama cleverly combines the revelation of Ireland’s scandalous baby export business with the story of a mother’s desperate lifelong search for her son. This complex, yet gripping movie is simply and effortlessly told. Despite its light narrative, the film never loses its depth, revealing multiple layers of complexity, dimensional character designs and a right balance of charming and serious scenes.

I find the movie poster highly misleading, suggesting a feel-good movie when it is in fact much more than that. In a delicate voice, the movie approaches and deals with atonement, doubt, grief, forgiveness and hope on diverse levels which touches hearts and at the same time, finds the right tone to criticise the Catholic Church. Philomena presents sexuality and injustice gracefully which is the main construct building up to this powerful tragedy which stays with the viewer long term and reminds that there are still thousands of cases unsolved.


Have you seen Philomena or heard about the  Irish baby export scandal? I'd love to read your thought in the comment section below and will reply to everyone.

Thanks so much for reading and till next time,

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