TCFF 2016 Review: The Babymoon

Written by The Vern

This was one movie I had little interest in seeing at the Twin Cities Film Fest. What could be so fascinating about watching a couple on a vacation in some sort of luxury hotel? The trailer made the husband out to be a certain kind of feminine hygiene product. While the wife behaved in a way that rhymes with the word “runt”. Why would I care if some political rebels kidnapped the dude while the wife goes looking for him? The trailer had moments that made me laugh, but nothing about it made me excited to be spending two hours with these characters. I thought I was going to hate this when I sat down and was ready to dismiss it before it even began. It turned out to be one of the best movies at the fest, and it holds a place on my Top-10 favorite movies of 2016 list.

The Babymoon is about a couple who are visiting a beautiful resort while they are expecting their first child. Trace (Shaun Sipos) is a former reality TV star and Hanna (Julie McNiven) makes and sells jewelry. While at the resort, Hanna has a chance encounter with this big time business mogul who is interested in seeing her work.

When Trace sees them together he gets a little jealous and goes off with the hotel maid Yesenia (Jessica Camacho) for a small walk. While on the beach, she tries her best to seduce him. He holds her off, which is not easy to do because she is very beautiful. It turns out the whole seduction thing was only a set up. The maid is actually part of an elite group of rebels who want to use Trace as leverage to get some changes made in the government. Hanna discovers that her man may not be the kind of jerk she thought he was and goes out to find him.

I really thought for sure the husband was going to be a complete jerk to his wife and in return, the wife was going to be a total bitch to everyone else. I was completely wrong about both of them. While some men may have sneaked a quick peek at two models passing by, Trace just keeps his cool and walks right by. There was even a great scene at the airport when a stewardess was blatantly hitting on him, and he asked her to please stop touching him.

I thought Hanna was going to be cruel to everyone she meets because of the way she feels about her body. At the pool, she sees a beautiful young bartender hand her husband a slip of paper, which turned out to be just the bill. On her quest, she has several moments where she becomes much more confident and shows that carrying a child is not a setback, but a strength. There was even a great scene where Hanna visits the home of a sick child that in most movies would have seemed cliche but in this movie. It actually was really sweet.

As a single guy with no kids, this movie shouldn’t speak to me at all. I am not the target demographic that this movie is shooting for, yet I found it incredibly charming and a lot of fun. When it needed to have laughs, it delivered without becoming too sitcom-y. When drama needed to happen, it does it in a real and genuine way that never overstays its welcome.

There’s even a few action scenes that made me a little bit nervous watching because Julie McNiven was actually pregnant during the filming. Not only were the main cast good, but every single supporting role was a lot of fun, from Kelly Perine as the Sheriff to Georgie Guinane as an extreme animal lover That is one of the best things to say about writer/director Bailey Kobe. He gives us a movie that both men and women can enjoy at different moments in our lives. I may not understand what bringing a small child into the world is like and I don’t need to. The Babymoon is still enjoyable without knowing.

This is one of the many films presented at the Twin Cities Film Fest.

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