What’s it about? 
 In 1950s Ireland, Philomena Lee became pregnant out of wedlock, was removed to a convent and forced to give her child up for adoption. Half a century later, Lee (Judi Dench) contacts jaded journalist Martin Sixsmith (Steve Coogan) to help her find her son.
What did we think?
Marnie says: Philomena is “based on a true story” done right. The central premise – one woman’s tireless search for her son, and her strength in the face of heartbreak wrought by the hands of the Catholic Church – is compelling. Dench is a quiet powerhouse, and she and Coogan are delightful as the unlikely companions. Gorgeously captured scenery underscores the honest human drama. With a screenplay full of heart, the film packs an emotional punch yet never manipulates. It’s beautifully nuanced, moving cinema.

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