Friday, March 15, 2013


By D.E.Levine

A New Directors/New Films 2013 Selection

A truly fascinating and personal documentary by Oscar-nominated director Sarah Polley.  The story unfolds like a thriller as Polley searches to uncover her family's darkest secrets.

Having gotten her family members to portray themselves at their current ages, Polley uses actors and family home movies to portray them and her deceased mother at earlier stages.

Bravely using her film as an investigative tool, the Toronto-based director and actress uncovers a fact long rumored in the family and among family friends - the man who raised her and who she calls Dad is not her biological father.

The news has already been disclosed in newspapers and magazines, but this fascinating look at how Polley discovered she was the result of an extramarital affair her mother Diane had while performing a play in Montreal, is full of surprises at every level.

The happy baby joined four older siblings upon birth and although her mother died when she was eleven, except for rumors and teasing, and the fact that she didn't resemble other family members, there was never any real proof she wasn't the product of her parents Diane and Michael.

While it's unconventional that Polley was able to convince family members and friends to agree to interviews discussing the most sensitive of subjects, and even get them to appear in the film, it is n the extraordinary that she was able to track down her real biological father and get him to appear in the film as well.

There's no judging of anyone in the film.  It's a dispassionate look at facts that also points out we are each the result of our environment and upbringing rather than our DNA.