Womb – Siff 2011 Movie Review

Womb [  Germany (English), 2010, 107 minutes ]
Director: Benedek Fliegauf
Principal Cast: Eva Green, Matt Smith, Hannah Murray, Tristan Christopher, Ruby O. Fee
See it: May 22, 24, at SIFF

Womb explores the complexities of love, attachment, and grief in a science fiction setting where cloning is readily available and very controversial. When Rebecca’s childhood love, Tommy, dies suddenly, she decides to birth his clone and raise him as her son. As time goes on and people learn of her secret, Rebecca isolates her and Tommy in a beach front cabin without many neighbors. As Tommy matures through adolescence, the secrecy becomes harder to maintain. The mother-son relationship becomes increasingly uncomfortable as Rebecca finds it harder to maintain her motherly facade and becomes increasingly attracted to her child.

Eva Green is quickly becoming one of my favorite actresses (her performance in Perfect Sense was also stellar). Womb relies on long, quiet scenes requiring the actors to have tremendous screen presence to carry the film. Green captivates the screen with a tormented beauty that draws you in.

Overall Entertainment / Enjoyment: A-
The quality oozes out of this movie, however I will give it a minus for a drawing out each scene a bit too much. Long, silent scenes are fine and dandy, but a few less would have been good.

Film Festivalness: A
This is 100% a film festival movie. Where else would you be able to watch a movie about a woman birthing a clone of her lover?

Siff Provided Synopsis:
It’s rare to find a genuine science-fiction film with the controlled visuals and eerie sense of possibility on display in Benedek Fliegauf’s twisted Oedipal drama. This haunting tale is set in a future very similar to our own time, save for one crucial difference; in this future, cloning is not only possible, it is commonly available. Eva Green (Casino Royale) plays Rebecca, a woman recently re-united with her childhood love Tommy (Matt Smith). When Tommy is tragically killed, Rebecca makes a fateful decision that will test the viewer’s beliefs and moral compass. She allows herself to become pregnant with Tommy’s clone, thereby becoming mother to her lover. Fliegauf—a Hungarian director making his English-language debut with this film—unspools his tale of psychosexual exploration, suppression, and madness with a stylist’s eye for haunting imagery. With cinematically stunning camera work by fellow Hungarian Péter Szatmári, and anchored by Green’s bravura turn (in a particularly affecting choice, Fliegauf refuses to have Rebecca age as her cloned Tommy grows up), WOMB is an outstanding piece of cinema that challenges conventions.


Provided Film Synopsis

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