7.6/10
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242 user 337 critic

Philomena (2013)

PG-13 | | Biography, Drama | 27 November 2013 (USA)
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A world-weary political journalist picks up the story of a woman's search for her son, who was taken away from her decades ago after she became pregnant and was forced to live in a convent.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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4,700 ( 5)
Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 32 wins & 76 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Young Philomena
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Ruth McCabe ...
Mother Barbara
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Pete Olsson
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Michael
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Young Nun
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Sister Anunciata
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Kathleen
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Young Sister Hildegarde
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Storyline

When former journalist Martin Sixsmith is dismissed from the Labour Party in disgrace, he is at a loss as to what do. That changes when a young Irish woman approaches him about a story of her mother, Philomena, who had her son taken away when she was a teenage inmate of a Catholic convent. Martin arranges a magazine assignment about her search for him that eventually leads to America. Along the way, Martin and Philomena discover as much about each other as about her son's fate. Furthermore, both find their basic beliefs challenged. Written by Kenneth Chisholm (kchishol@rogers.com)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The true story of a search for a lost son. See more »

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 on appeal for some strong language, thematic elements and sexual references | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

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Language:

Release Date:

27 November 2013 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Filomena  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$12,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£1,509,726 (UK) (3 November 2013)

Gross:

$37,707,719 (USA) (16 May 2014)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

There are flashbacks, done with "home movies". Some were created for the film, and some are footage of her real son. See more »

Goofs

The church in the end scene is obviously in England. Even if a church of this appearance existed in Ireland it would not be in Catholic ownership as all pre reformation churches were given to the Anglicans. They should have found a credible church while filming in Ireland. See more »

Quotes

Philomena: Remember Martin, it isn't their fault. They didn't know Anthony had a different name.
Martin Sixsmith: One of them did.
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Crazy Credits

Real footage of Anthony/Michael is shown at the ending credits See more »

Connections

Featured in Projector: Philomena (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Nocturne In F-Sharp, Op. 15, No. 2
(uncredited)
Composed by Frédéric Chopin
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Much more subtle and interesting than I predicted
1 November 2013 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

The film starts with the message that it is based on true events. Although you might wonder what was changed for the film, you soon forget that and accept it as a whole. In short it was brilliant. It could have been a predictable story but instead it had other dimensions and took unexpected directions with strong characters and some humour. I thought I knew an outline beforehand and was pleasantly surprised when that part was covered in the first twenty minutes. It was intriguing where the story would take us and that happened a few more times later. In addition to Philomena's journey, there was also Martin Sixsmith's journey from the beginning as just a detached journalist doing a human interest story on someone, whom he thought was beneath him, to being totally involved and offering not to publish it. To illustrate the depths of this film you can see how it attacks cruel, narrow-minded, sanctimonious Catholicism and at the same time shows how the faith gave strength to Philomena and the ability to forgive rather than to wreak vengeance. The acting was totally convincing. It is going to be a competitive year but Judy must be up for another Oscar. Just watching Steve Coogan's almost imperceptible expressions of irritation as Philomena told him the interminable plot of the book she had just been reading, was wonderful. This is definitely the best film I have seen all year. After writing this I read the interview with Martin Sixsmith on the Guardian web-site. It fills in more detail about Michael Hess (Anthony Lee) but confirms the whole truth of the story.


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