This Little Life | Chicago Reader

This Little Life

The imprisoning, hothouse world of a neonatal intensive care unit is explored in this searing 2003 drama. The mother of a boy born at 23 weeks lives at the hospital for months, desperately hoping that her son will beat the four-to-one odds against his survival. Director Sarah Gavron deftly captures the horror and helplessness of the situation with intense, skewed close-ups of the parents and frightening images of the preemie surrounded by tubes and wires, but avoids manipulative bathos by employing restraint at key moments: when the mother consoles another woman who's lost her child, we see them hugging only in long shot. Rosemary Kay based the script on her autobiographical novel, Saul. 80 min.

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