Secrets and Lies
and Vera Drake
director Mike Leigh takes a look at the lighter side of things in this engaging, sometimes frustrating feature about Poppy (Sally Hawkins), an unrelentingly sunny 30-year-old schoolteacher who elects to be happy, no matter what life throws at her. Her boundless optimism is fascinating, though there were times when I wanted to strangle her. The rest of the cast is spot-on, especially Eddie Marsan as an extremely uptight driving instructor with a hair-trigger temper. 118 minutes. DVD INFO: Includes a commentary track by Leigh and featurettes.