I have seen many heavy and emotional films so far during Cine Las Americas International Film Fest, and when I saw I could close out Saturday night with a comedy, I made sure to attend to just sit back and enjoy a good time. I also know the director Juana Macías has won several awards, so I wanted to see one of her movies and judge for myself. Even if it might be considered a “chick flick,” everyone loves a good rom-com.
Review by Nathan Garza
Spanish rom-com “Embarazados” centers on Alina and Francisco, a couple in their late 30s, hearing the harsh reality about their aging bodies and what that means for having kids. Their doctor tells Alina that despite being 37, her reproductive system is practically “an old lady” and Fran’s sperm is “few, lazy, and abnormal.” Not liking their odds, the doctor explains to them about in vitro fertilization, and that while it might not work on the first try, it will definitely improve the chances of getting pregnant from their current odds.
Of course, because this is a rom-com, the plot is filled with doubts, frustration, and the eventual split of the couple. Fran, feeling the pressure of trying to conceive a child for Alina, while still not being sure he wants to go through with it, gets close to his company getting their cartoon on the air after years of hardwork. This causes tension between him and Alina, which then carries over into work as well.
Not only that, but they recently hired a young and beautiful girl at the office who makes him confused at what he wants. Alina, upset with how Fran is treating something that she feels should be the most important thing in their lives, decides to move in with her sister and deal with it on her own.
Tragedy strikes for both of them in different ways, and they both soon realize they still need each other. Fran sees his serial single coworkers starting to get serious with various women and Alina, getting pregnant through a donor, realizes she still wants to have a family with Fran.
As far as rom-coms go, the major points of the story were predictable, but I don’t think I’ve seen a rom-com hit on topics like in vitro fertilization, breastfeeding circles, beta blocker sects, or a different take on sex scenes with a vibrator.
The funniest character in the movie might be their in vitro specialist, who likes to be sassy and make several sport-related metaphors. I think the last major rom-com to make me laugh and feel it wasn’t so “cookie cutter” was “Knocked Up.” It’s been awhile since that movie has come out (even following with a spinoff/sequel, “This is 40”). “Embarazados” definitely rivals that level of comedy in an age-old format.
Over all, I was very impressed by Macías’ film and it was just what I needed to wrap up my week with Cine Las Americas. It also makes me want to check out other foreign romantic comedies, in case I’m missing something that other countries have done to break the monotony of American rom-coms. I highly recommend checking out this flick for something fun and light hearted, I guarantee you’ll have plenty of laughs throughout!
I’m definitely new to this whole writing thing, so forgive lack of eloquencies. I play a lot of video games and have more movie opinions than most people care to hear. In the process of leash training my cat so we can eventually go hiking together. You can follow me on Twitter & Instagram: @n842, learn about my new movie podcast Thoughts in the Can here, and my in-progress video game podcast Hard Mode here.