Films from Past Years/ Oranges and Sunshine
Narrative Feature | UK | 2011 | 105 min | Website
Director: Jim Loach
Sponsored by: Barbara McGrew and Dan Fivel
In this extraordinary and eye-opening film Emily Watson plays Margaret Humphreys, a British social worker who made it her mission to investigate the post-War scandal of child deportation. Children in care were literally transported – like criminals from a bygone age – to Australia, there to be kept in children’s homes, in places like the remote bush south of Perth, run by the Christian Brothers. Single-handedly and against overwhelming odds, Humphreys reunited thousands of families and drew worldwide attention to an extraordinary miscarriage of justice. Loach (son of filmmaker Ken Loach) shows how her controversial intervention triggered something like the retrieval of a repressed collective memory. Wisely and successfully, Loach has avoided easy emotional showdowns and cascades of horror stories. And Watson provides a performance that boldly lacks vanity while exuding strength.