2020 / drama / 1h 33min / directed by Jeremy Hersh /
country: USA / language: English
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“Jess Harris (Jasmine Batchelor, “The Good Fight”), a 29 year old web designer for a nonprofit in Brooklyn, is ecstatic to be the surrogate and egg-donor for her best friend Josh (Chris Perfetti, “Looking”) and his husband Aaron (Sullivan Jones, Slave Play). Twelve weeks into the pregnancy, a prenatal test comes back with unexpected results that pose a moral dilemma. As they all consider the best course of action, the relationship between the three friends is put to the test.”
I came of age being told that as a queer person, I was entitled to the same rights as straight people, including having biological children if I wanted to. I set out to write a film about a relationship between queer people and their chosen family who are confronted with the same types of difficult questions (ethical and otherwise) that all potential parents have to answer, questions that are becoming increasingly complicated due to recent advances in prenatal testing technology. I don’t have the answers to these questions, or a particular message I set out to convey, but I’m interested in the various points of view and conversations these questions provoke.
I make movies partly as a way of investigating my own blind spots, in order to hopefully identify them and learn from them. Like so many among us, the characters in The Surrogate pride themselves on being open-minded progressives who talk openly and freely about everything. The conflict in the film arises when they’re finally confronted with something they don’t know how to talk about. Ultimately, the characters have to confront the gap between ideals and practical realities. –Jeremy Hersh