Director: Stephen Frears
Year Released: 2013
A journalist (Steve Coogan, who also had a hand with the script) in need of a good story comes across the tale of a woman (Judi Dench) who got pregnant at a very young age (while in a convent!) and was forced to give up her child, so he goes along with her to the United States to find out what happened to her son. Despite being a bit simple in construction (Coogan's cynicism is played against Dench's accept-it-all good nature), this turns out to be an interesting tale of acceptance and putting-the-pieces-together, as Dench - who, as usual, completely shines - learns about the positive aspects and negative aspects of her (late) son's life and holds out hope that he never forgot his life growing up in Ireland. Surprisingly affecting - despite derivations from the real-life story - and also most intriguing as a condemnation of Catholicism's tendency to hide/conceal. This is a nice bounce-back for Frears, whose last movie, Lay the Favorite, is easily the worst of his professional career.