Arts & Entertainment

PHILOMENA

Judi Dench is incredibly moving as Philomena, a lady in her 70s who travels to America with journalist Martin Sixsmith (Steve Coogan) in search of a son she hasn’t seen in 50 years.

Inspired by true events, the story unfolds through effective flashbacks to the 1950s, an era when Irish-Catholic communities had zero tolerance for ‘shamed’ young girls who fell pregnant out of wedlock. They were banished to convents run by evil nuns who ultimately sold the toddlers to childless couples in America.

Audiences will feel for Philomena as the anguish invoked by the blatant hypocrisy of the Catholic Church intensifies. The perfect balance of light humour and sensitivity delivers an inspiring and triumphant film.

Philomena is a fine tribute to the thousands of Irish women who are still desperately searching for their children today. (MM)

****1/2

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