I saw Ben Lewin‘s The Surrogate this morning, and yes, it’s a touching, thoughtful and comforting film about touching, needing, being open and the finding of fulfillment. It’s an emotionally erotic variation on the themes in My Left Foot, The Sea Inside and The Diving Bell and the Butterfly with a little dash of Who’s Life Is It Anyway? thrown in. And John Hawkes will almost certainly get some awards action eight to ten months hence; ditto Helen Hunt.
The only thing the film (i.e., Lewin) lacks is a strong visual imagination. Any film about a paralyzed protagonist needs to somehow free itself from that immobility. It can’t just be a series of static interiors or the viewer will start to be hemmed in to some degree. I haven’t time to flesh this out as I need to be at screening…later.