For someone that has seen too many movies set in the COVID 19 pandemic lockdown era, this tells a story from a very unique perspective.
You can’t imagine how it must be like being a single mother by choice in the lockdown period struggling with finances whilst pregnant.
‘Single Mother by Choice‘, tells the story of Eva, an overachieving Latinx woman determined to have a baby on her own terms. Amidst the complexities that came with the COVID-19 pandemic.
The film stresses the importance of being strong for oneself and understanding that being able to ask for help is part of that process. They say it takes a village to raise a child and that truly turns out to be the case for Eva. Even before the child arrives.
Eva chooses to be a single mother believing that she had everything under control and not expecting any curveballs from the universe. She goes in to have the procedure done expecting smooth sailing through thereafter. But as things get tougher than she expected, she learns quickly that she really does need other people’s help.
It’s a film that could be very relatable for many and not just persons who chose to be single mothers. The truth is everyone needs help. And it is okay to ask for help.
Eva is introduced to us as a very strong and abrasive woman. She knows what she wants and doesn’t hesitate to share her opinion. But we later get to see a much vulnerable side of her once things get tough.
Writer, producer and actress Selina Ringel turns her real-life pregnancy into this decent drama with some comic elements. What we see in this film is her actually go through nine months of pregnancy. She is able to use what she is going through to tell this interesting story whilst staying true to the character she is tasked with. She nails it well enough right through to after the baby is delivered. Her performance is compelling to make this film worthy of being made.
The film is directed by Selina‘s real-life husband Dan Levy Dagerman. Together, they are able to navigate around their own experiences of the pregnancy period to put together this drama. The original plan was just to document the pregnancy period for themselves but they brilliantly changed plans and decided to make this important film.
The film also uses some clever ways to make you feel the intensity of self-isolation that came with COVID. Some of the interactions between characters are done over facetime and video calls. But the characterizations and the emotions are not lost in the virtual interactions. Unlike some COVID era independent films I have seen, this has a more all-inclusive feel and is not just about one person.
‘Single Mother By Choice‘ might be a bit laid back for many, but it is engaging and honest. The makers didn’t try to do anything outrageous or over that top. But with what they had available to them they successfully pull this through.
Everyone needs help, even if you are a single mother by choice. Having people that care enough to support you through that journey could be all you need to be able to go through it.
I would rate this film a well-deserving 6.5/10. It’s available for streaming HBO Max (VOD) since November 2, 2021.