An expert observer of unembellished humanity, writer-director Mike Leigh reached new levels of expressive power and intricacy with this exploration of the deceptions, small and large, that shape our relationships. When Hortense (Marianne Jean-Baptiste), a Black optometrist who was adopted as a child, begins the search for her birth mother, she doesn’t expect that it will lead her to Cynthia (Brenda Blethyn, winner of the Cannes Film Festival’s best actress award), a lonely white factory worker whose tentative embrace of her long-lost daughter sends shock waves through the rest of her already fragile family. Born from a painstaking process of rehearsal and improvisation with a powerhouse ensemble cast, Secrets & Lies lays bare the emotional fault lines running beneath everyday lives.
Free. Accessible seats available; for information, call 413 549 0524. In 2023, the Clark celebrates the fiftieth anniversary of the Manton Research Center building. We’re filling the calendar with a year-long series of events celebrating the building’s architecture and all the activities that happen inside, as well as the remarkable support of the Manton Foundation. Image: Secrets and Lies, Mike Leigh, 1996