By Elaine Hegwood Bowen, M.S.J.
When young loner Anna, played by Patti Harrison, is hired as the gestational surrogate for Matt, played by Ed Helms, a single man in his 40s who wants a child, the two strangers come to realize this unexpected relationship will quickly challenge their perceptions of connection, boundaries and the particulars of love.
This is a delightful film that covers just what goes into a woman carrying a baby for someone else—for hire. Anna has not had much luck with men, as she relocated to California to be with a boyfriend who has left her. Her family thinks she isn’t cut out to do anything worthwhile, as she has had a baby in the past that she put up for adoption and works in retail.
Matt is a likeable app developer who just wants a child of his own. He has paid Anna $15,000 for her services. However, he becomes too chummy with Anna since this is supposed to just be a business arrangement. Of course, he accompanies her to doctor’s visits and birthing classes, but he also wants her to complete a food log, so he knows just what his baby is eating, and the two are in couples’ therapy.
They have decided that they would not learn about the baby’s gender and decide to nickname it “Lamp.” The two work on the nursery together, and eventually Anna stays over Matt’s house a few days a week.
Anna has a male friend that Matt wants to know all about. But Anna must put up some boundaries. She proclaims that she does have a life. Her life, however, for the moment is making sure that she delivers a healthy baby for Matt.
Their relationship is an exceptional one, in that many surrogacy arrangements are entered into with a couple wanting a child and a woman who is willing to give birth to said child. In this case, it’s just Matt, which gives him plenty of time to latch onto Anna, so to speak.
It’s a platonic relationship between two friends, who may have been friends, even if Anna wasn’t carrying Matt’s baby. They find mutual interests, other than “Lamp,” and Matt is truly concerned about Anna’s plan after she gives birth—which include her going away to college in Vermont.
In the end, Anna gives birth to a beautiful baby boy, and Matt is happy and free of his entanglement with Anna. But I don’t believe that this is possible, not only because “Lamp” has entered into the picture, but because Anna is still his birth mother, as well as a dear friend.
Take a look at the trailer: TOGETHER TOGETHER | Official Trailer | Bleecker Street – Bing video.
The film comes to Chicago’s Landmark Century Centre Cinema, AMC Theatres and others on April 23. It will be available on digital platforms on May 11.