DocPoint: Love Child
Love Child offers a poignant portrait of Leila and Sahand, an Iranian couple who, outlawed for their love, flee the country with their four-year-old son, Mani. In Tehran, they committed the crime of having a secret affair while being married to other people and were forbidden to get divorced. Neither could they acknowledge that Mani was an illegitimate child since adultery can be punished with execution in Iran. Intimately filmed over five years, we follow their quest to be together, battling with both Iranian and European law, their lives in limbo.
Early in the film, Sahand attempts to comfort a crying Leila, murmuring to her not to worry, because “nothing’s going to happen.” It’s an assurance based on nothing but blind hope, a sentiment that guides so much of Love Child. Nothing’s going to happen, but everything does in the course of seven years, and inappropriate as it may seem to chalk a family’s very real life up to cinematic twists and turns, Mulvad’s film is one of the most absorbing dramas of the year. That it’s real only makes it’s an object of further fascination, fear, and raw hope.
Kate Erbland, Indiewire
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