Baby Done (15)
Baby Done (15)
Director: Curtis Vowell
Runtime: 91 minutes
Cast: Rose Matafeo, Matthew Lewis, Emily Barclay, Nic Sampson, Madeleine Sami
Synopsis: When Zoe and Tim find out they are having a baby, they resolve to not let parenthood change them. Tim runs towards being a dad, while Zoe runs away from being a mum. Terrified that her life won’t be her own anymore, Zoe is still determined to tick off a list of their wildest dreams before the baby arrives. Zoe’s increasing denial about her impending birth pushes her, and her relationship, to the limit.
New Zealanders, director Curtis Vowell [Fantail (2013), Krampus (2015)] and writer, Sophie Henderson (a couple in real life) bring us Baby Done – a witty and different look at parenthood, produced by their compatriot, Jojo Rabbit’s Taika Waititi.
Zoe [comedian Rose Matafeo, a London-based New Zealander and writer of BBC Three’s millennial sitcom Starstruck (2021)]is an arborist and would-be adventurer who panics when she falls pregnant to her long-term boyfriend Tim [Matthew Lewis – Harry Potter films as Neville Longbottom; Ripper Street, (TV 2016)] a man who is over the moon at the prospect of fatherhood.
The result is a novel comedy drama which reflects the ambivalence of many mums-to-be who feel increasing pressure to be perfect.
Both Zoe and Tim initially are taken aback to find out that she is pregnant. But while Tim is eager to be a dad, Zoe frets that her adventurous life has come to an end. So she draws up a bucket list to achieve before the baby arrives.
“I don’t want to not have a baby,” she says. But Zoe, a tree-climbing arborist by profession, and a thrill-seeking adventurer by choice, is fed up with losing friends, and describes the life cycle as “Married, house, baby, done”, implying that people are not the same after completing these steps.
Baby Done explores the fear of losing or compromising one’s true self when parenthood strikes.
Rose Matafeo delivers a terrific performance in an episodic film structure charting the fluctuations of the couple’s relationship with skilled physical comedy.
There is a short but very funny scene where the reluctant mum-to-be seeks solace from a creepy “pregnophile” fetishist Brian (Nic Sampson) whom she connects with online. “It’s so hard to find a beautiful single woman with a bonus in the belly”, he tells her.
The sharp and insightful script delivers many such witty one-liners as Zoe attempts to rush through her ‘bucket list’ of dreams.
Streaming on digital platforms
Images courtesy of Vertigo Releasing