Academic journal article Journal of Religion and Film

Human Affairs

Academic journal article Journal of Religion and Film

Human Affairs

Article excerpt

This film begins with the narration of Geneviéve, describing how her father inexplicably deserted the family when she was young. Since then, she has had an abusive boyfriend, and now is somewhat without focus or purpose in her life. This is all told with photos rather than film, adding to the documentary style. The story then commences in media res as she is staying with Lucinda and Sidney, who have engaged Geneviéve as the surrogate mother for their child.

We immediately sense that there is an attraction between Sidney and Geneviéve. It is neither a story of the older man seducing the young woman nor the young siren seeking to manipulate the man. Rather, they genuinely like each other, and Geneviéve is drawn to older men as she attempts to compensate for the loss of her father. She is needy, and Sidney responds, but he draws back from fully exploiting this. He is not a bad person; he wants to raise the child with Lucinda. But he is torn, as he thinks he may be in love with Geneviéve.

The issues are complicated as Sidney has written a play in which Lucinda is starring. They are attached personally and professionally. He knows he cannot sustain a relationship with Geneviéve and tells her as much. She is angry and threatens to abort the child. As things come to a head, it appears that Geneviéve will tell Lucinda that she and Sidney are in love, but somehow this does not happen. She holds to the contract and lets the couple have the child. …

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