Sunday, 13 March 2016

Review of Paternity Leave

I spent the weekend at my friend's, and as usual, we watched a gay movie. I was very tentative about watching this one as it involved male pregnancy. Now, those who know me will understand that that I think MPreg as a trope should be condemned to the fiery pits of hell, a hangover from my fandom days.  So I wasn't much in the mood for Paternity Leave, but Charlie David is one of the main cast and I will pretty much watch anything he is in.

I'm afraid there will be some spoilers in this review.

There are a lot of good things about Paternity Leave. I'll deal with them first, and the bad things later. On the plus points, as a woman who's been pregnant four times and given birth twice I think Jacob York did a great job of showing what it was like to be pregnant. The first morning sickness scene was, shall we say, unexpected, I confess I laughed in rueful memory. The worries and nerves, the waddling to get off chairs, the feeling of loss of control. I so understood this, and I imagine most of the mothers watching this would.

I also like that it wasn't one man, it was an epidemic. Most telling was Ken (Charlie David, the partner) wanted to be the first, to be special, and Greg hated the thought. I think the writers handled that well. I also think the pacing was good, with one caveat which I 'll tackle later.

Chris Salvatore was a delight as ever as the doula, and I'm glad they didn't fall into the obvious trap which I was worried they would. I won't say what because I don't want to spoil it.

The casting was good and the characters well fleshed out. I liked the chemistry between Greg and Ken. I'd also kill for that apartment, and the cat and chicken was a great addition. The birth scene was only too realistic. I watched it from behind my pillow because again - the memories. A friend pointed out something about the concept of men giving birth but I'm not going there.

Okay, onto the bad points. The twink boyfriend was a completely useless plot device and I hate flashbacks. More time could have been spent building up the relationship with Greg and Ken in the beginning. Everything jumped around too quickly. Why did Ken turn into a total dick? Seriously, there was enough meat on the plot to have avoided that. His worries could have been explored more sensitively, And honestly, I totally understand the concept of wanting a hot, gay doula, but making every one of the women useless... hmmm *grinds teeth*.

But quibbles aside it was a good hour and half's entertainment.

Casting 10/10
Plot 6/10
Dialogue 8/10
Setting 9/10
Making a woman who hates MPreg enjoy it... priceless.






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