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ReelTalk Movie Reviews
Dad's Dilemma
by Betty Jo Tucker

With Child tells the touching story of a widowed construction worker and his efforts to rebuild his life as a single dad while struggling with custody issues plus the romantic overtures of his eccentric new boss. Kerry van der Griend and Leslie Lewis co-star as Auden and Petra in this unique indie film that’s already earned a Best World Showcase nomination at the 2015 SoHo International Film Festival as well as a Leo Award nomination for Best Production Design from the Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Foundation of British Columbia.   

A baby girl

left in his care.

A job to find.

It’s hard to bear.

 

Construction work

looks very dim,

for baby needs

to be with him.    

 

And who will hire

him with this child?

Surprise in store --

a woman wild!

 

Why would she want

these two at work?

Do dangers lie

and evils lurk?

 

With Child makes us

care deeply for

dad and daughter   

and much more.

 

His boss may seem

weird at first sight.

But soon it’s clear

she wants what’s right.

  

With Child moved me

with its big heart.

It’s worth a look

like all great art.

 “Three years ago, Titus Heckel wrote With Child with my friend Kerry van der Griend in mind to play the lead,” Leslie Lewis explains. “Kerry suggested me for the role of Petra, and when I read the script, I thought it would be a good fit for my first film as lead producer. It has been an utter joy to work with this team, and I love the message of the film: What we choose now affects our past.”

Lewis (Locked in a Garage Band) made a wise decision when she agreed to portray Petra. She projects power, quirkiness and vulnerability in this key role, and I look forward to seeing her in many more movies. Van der Griend (Night at the Museum) also impressed me with his sensitive depiction of Auden, a father facing so many obstacles. And Lori Kokotailo (I See You & Me) deserves recognition for her no-nonsense turn as the child’s aunt. But remember W. C. Fields’ warning to actors about appearing with children? In this case, the darling baby almost crawls away with the entire film. What a charmer!

 

Based on a true story, With Child benefits considerably from caring direction by Titus Heckel (The Better Man), who also wrote the poignant -- and often amusing --  screenplay. I absolutely love this unusual indie film! However, I’m still not convinced that babies and construction work mix well together.

 

(With Child premiered at the SoHo International Film Festival on May 16, 2015.)

 

Listen to Leslie Lewis talk about With Child during her Movie Addict Headquarters interview by clicking here.


                                                                                                                                                                               
 
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