Starring: Paco León, Alexandra Jiménez, Alberto Amarilla
Director: Juana Macías
Running Time: 104 mins
We Are Pregnant (Embarazados) is a Spanish film about a couple who, having encountered troubles in having kids, struggle through the aftermath as they have to decide whether they should take their last chance to have children.
The struggles of a couple when their previously perfect relationship hits a roadblock when it comes to having kids. It’s a story that you’ve definitely seen before, and more often than not in a very similar rom-com-style guise. In that, We Are Pregnant fails to land with underwhelming comedy and disappointing emotional drama for the most part, and while it features two likable lead performances, as well as surprisingly touching finale, the film is mostly a rather poor affair.
Let’s start off with the one thing that does work right the way through here, and that’s the performances. Paco León and Alexandra Jiménez have been all over the silver screen in Spain over the last few years, and it’s films like this that show just why. While there really isn’t all that much to rave about when it comes to their characters, or the humour devised by the screenplay, the pair have a fantastic chemistry and likability throughout that makes the movie immensely more enjoyable to watch than otherwise likely would have been the case.
Balancing their performances well between the sillier, comedic side of the story and a more dramatic, emotional plot, both Jiménez and León have the charisma and gravitas at the same time to make both those parts of the screenplay engrossing.
However, two lead performances can’t carry an entire film on their own, and while the lead duo are both thoroughly likable from beginning to end, the same can’t be said for the screenplay, which really fails to manage that balance between comedy and drama in the same way as the lead actors.
The story itself is formulaic, predictable and fairly dull, with the usual rom-com arc of a dysfunctional couple coming into play throughout. However, what We Are Pregnant could have done is taken a stronger bias on either the comedic or dramatic side, thereby doing away with the awkward juggling act that leaves the humour less than hilarious, and the drama feeling rather underdeveloped.
Of course, a balanced comedy-drama is better than just one side of things, but this film really doesn’t seem to have the talent or ingenuity on board anywhere to make that happen, and its ambition to be something a little more impressive is regularly undermined by its formulaic story and predictable dramatic arc.
The only saving grace in that respect comes in the last fifteen minutes or so, where the story manages to make you think that something a little out of the ordinary is going to happen. With a more grounded, realistic mindset as we move into the finale, the film briefly takes on a genuinely touching quality, something that’s helped further by the fact that it stops trying to be funny in the latter stages as well.
I can’t say that the ultimate conclusion to the film is quite as satisfying as what it’s perhaps set up to be, but those final few minutes did breathe a little bit of life and originality into an otherwise dull and predictable film, and that’s why I’m giving We Are Pregnant a 6.5 overall.