In a mall public bathroom, Lilly, François and their 6 year- old daughter bid farewell to an unborn family member
À la toilette d’un centre commercial, Lilly, François et leur fille Léa, 6 ans, doivent faire leurs adieux à un fœtus de 12 semaines.
12 Weeks is a rather simple film with plenty of heart breaking and heart filled moments of a family dealing with the sudden loss of an unborn family member. While adding an international flavor with its original French language, filmed in Quebec, the story touches home to so many people worldwide who’ve had the unfortunate luck to deal with such tragedy.
Having lived two miscarriages, I can say that these are really painful events for a couple trying to make up a small family. It is a sad situation, it hurts and I find that we speak little about it, especially that 10 to 15% of pregnancies end as miscarriage. It was after the birth of my daughter, who was born after two miscarriages, that I decided to write «12 weeks» and to broach the subject.
Despite being a simple premise, bringing a subject of such emotional will can be an incredibly challenging task. How do you set up the scenario? Which angle of perception do you take? How do you transcribe the particular felt emotions on screen? It becomes very easy to miss the intentions and get carried away with emotions on such subjects, but Marc-André chose to dig deep in his personal experience, to really give the film the most human touch possible.
Find the right angle to tell this slice of life, without falling into the pathos.. On the contrary, I wanted to leave a small glimmer of hope for those who are experiencing this ordeal and I note, following the screenings of the film, that it touches many more people than I could have imagined. Even within the film team, I was surprised to see how many people that had lived through these painful moments. I am convinced that everyone has contributed with their personal touch to this story, with a bit of their life.
Less show the sadness rather then the emptiness that is created when it is realized, after 12 weeks, that there is no child that will be born. In the first weeks of pregnancy, without too much shouting on the rooftops, the couple starts to create scenarios, first names are presented, a light planning of the bedroom is anticipated, we discuss with our first child about the fact that he is going to have a little brother or a little sister … and within a second, everything disappears. At that moment, the vacuum settles. My challenge was to tell this void in a simple story.
In the end, I don’t think anyone can truly capture such feeling of despair and loss through lenses, however we feel like Marc-André’s depiction will come as close as it gets.