Vera Drake

October 22nd, 2004


more trailers Vera Drake

Still of Imelda Staunton, Helen Coker and Philip Davis in Vera DrakeMike Leigh in Vera DrakeStill of Imelda Staunton in Vera DrakeStill of Imelda Staunton, Philip Davis, Daniel Mays and Alex Kelly in Vera DrakeStill of Imelda Staunton and Philip Davis in Vera DrakeStill of Imelda Staunton in Vera Drake

Abortionist Vera Drake finds her beliefs and practices clash with the mores of 1950s Britain--a conflict that leads to tragedy for her family.

Release Year: 2004

Rating: 7.7/10 (13,460 voted)

Critic's Score: 83/100

Director: Mike Leigh

Stars: Imelda Staunton, Jim Broadbent, Heather Craney

Vera Drake is a selfless woman who is completely devoted to, and loved by, her working class family. She spends her days doting on them and caring for her sick neighbor and elderly mother. However, she also secretly visits women and helps them induce miscarriages for unwanted pregnancies. While the practice itself was illegal in 1950s England, Vera sees herself as simply helping women in need, and always does so with a smile and kind words of encouragement. When the authorities finally find her out, Vera's world and family life rapidly unravel.

Imelda Staunton - Vera
Richard Graham - George
Eddie Marsan - Reg
Anna Keaveney - Nellie
Alex Kelly - Ethel
Daniel Mays - Sid
Philip Davis - Stan (as Phil Davis)
Lesley Manville - Mrs. Wells
Sally Hawkins - Susan
Simon Chandler - Mr. Wells
Sam Troughton - David
Marion Bailey - Mrs. Fowler
Sandra Voe - Vera's Mother
Chris O'Dowd - Sid's Customer
Adrian Scarborough - Frank

Taglines: Wife. Mother. Criminal.


Official Website: New Line Cinema [United States] |

Release Date: 22 October 2004

Filming Locations: 6 Fitzroy Square, Bloomsbury, London, England, UK

Box Office Details

Budget: $11,000,000(estimated)

Opening Weekend: $13,207 (USA) (10 October 2004) (2 Screens)

Gross: $3,753,806 (USA) (27 March 2005)

Technical Specs


Did You Know?

Filmed with no script, the film went on to be nominated for Best Original Screenplay for 2005 Oscar. Mike Leigh said that he "had to prepare the screenplay so it can be sent out to academy members. But actually the screenplay that was nominated doesn't exist. The film is the screenplay."

Anachronisms: When the young girl visits the psychiatrist, he asks her what her father does. She replies that "He works for the Ministry of Defence". However, the Ministry of Defence was not created until 1968 with the amalgamation of The War Office (Army), The Air Ministry (Royal Air Force) and The Admiralty (Royal Navy).

[first lines]
Vera: Hello George, only me. How are you going today?

User Review

It's not entertainment but...

Rating: 9/10

It's not entertainment but...this is an extraordinary piece of work.

I went to see Alexander on a Wednesday night and Vera Drake the night after and what a contrast! A story that means something, characters that feel rough and real in your hands like worn stones in an old pathway, and above all film making with a purpose with no effort to dazzle just inform.

It's not perfect, but this is the kind of imperfection all of us in Hollywood should strive for.

A word about the art direction too. I remember the 50's in England and yes it was just like that - I remember my parents kitchen being that dismal and green, and yes English people and English families can be that incommunicative, and yes they sat in front of the fire and talked about the war and the Blitz and yes we would sit in the parlour on Christmas day and eat off a table just like that.

There. I've shared secrets with you. Now go and see this and keep crap like Alexander off the screens.