🇩🇰 MAYBE BABY 🇩🇰
Maybe Baby (2023) is a Danish comedy feature film available on Netflix. It is 1 hour and 44 minutes in length and rated 15 U.K. In Danish with English subtitles.
“Two couples, Cecilie and Andreas and Liv and Malte, who are both in fertility treatment and discover that the clinic has swapped the fertilized eggs, setting off an avalanche of absurd conflicts.” IMDb
Sarah Boberg as Ulla
Neel Rønholt as Mette Line
Solbjørg Højfeldt as Irene
Thomas Bo Larsen as Thorbjorn
Thomas Backhausen as Jakob
Line Frank Karlson
Katinka Lærke Petersen
Writer: Pia Konstantin Berg
Director: Barbara Topsøe-Rothenborg
Cinematographer: Benjamin Kirk Nielsen
Editor: Carsten Søsted
Production Design: Camilla Silvana Navarro Howalt
In various scenes, paintings by the Danish artist Kristoffer Varming can be seen hanging on the walls.
Babies accidentally swapped at birth or shortly thereafter isn’t a new idea but it happening even before they are even born is. I was looking forward to watching Maybe Baby partly because of this concept and its potential for comedy (since that is the genre for this particular film). The other reason it appealed was because the cast is a very strong one with many well-known names. So did Maybe Baby fulfil its comedic potential?
The cast certainly did not disappoint and everyone turned in good performances. The four main characters were each played very well.
Taking the idea that one couple should be older and better off financially, even “class” whilst the other was younger and less well off. Add to this the jobs the older couple do (lawyer and estate agent) versus a couple that are more “New Age” (for want of a better word). Then we can use the ingredients of vegan vs meat eaters, cat owners vs no pets allowed (I think a whole gag of being dog vs cat people was a missed opportunity). Drinking alcohol or not during pregnancy (I’m not sure this one worked that well as a “thing” in this). You get the picture.
As the story goes on we explore some ethical grey areas and ideas such as what is the role of the woman who carries another’s child and so on.
Parts of this were genuinely funny but unfortunately, after a while, things got quite repetitive and tiresome. There are a few bits which seemed quite like skits that were thrown in without being truly part of the cohesive whole. And others just didn’t work and the film would have worked better had they been ditched onto the floor in editing.
Speaking of editing I did think there were a few instances (one in particular) where the editing of the storyline itself came over as being just wrong. That’s a scene involving a baby shower and a baby buggy shopping trip. I do think that this film could have been better if it was shorter and snappier.
One bugbear with this film is that someone really should have translated things that are written in Danish that are integral to understanding (hey, they’re there for a reason!)
If this review seems a little negative that’s because, sadly, at the end of the day it is. Despite the great cast and solid performances (Lars Ranthe is very good!) and an original idea with quite a few laughs along the way, I just cannot say that I really enjoyed this film. The characters, especially the supporting ones, were too often walking stereotypes. I often found it quite hard to sympathise with some characters. And lots of what happened just ended up irritating me, which is a shame, because there are positives to this film. It may have been better had it been even more absurdist. Overall then, this was a fairly disappointing movie.
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