Getting a glimpse into the life of Poppy, a 40-something elementary teacher in London, is exhausting to say the least. Saying Poppy (Sally Hawkins) is a cheerful person doesn’t begin to cut it. She is just in her own world all the time, very bubbly. Even in the face of problems, i.e. stolen bike and psycho men, Poppy remains optimistic and tries to find the best in people. Even her friends comment that she’s too nice and trusting of people.
Nothing much of significance happens in this film for the majority of it; it’s pretty much two hours of Poppy playing a kid. There were some hilarious, off-the-wall moments between Poppy and her tight-knit group of friends and family. I did like the English humor and some moments reminded me of the addicting adventures of Edina and Patsy in “Absolutely Fabulous.” Poppy has a lot of adventures, but the main moments of action and/or conflict are when Poppy meets a nice social worker and starts a relationship, while at the same time she’s trying to learn how to drive and her driving instructor becomes a jealous freak that mistakes Poppy’s friendliness as flirting.
I’m not familiar with English director Mike Leigh but he’s got a long resume of films. I get the moral of the story is to not take life too seriously, and to be loving to others but this particular portrayal just wasn’t very compelling.