Directed by Brooke Trantor
Screenplay by Kate Morgan Chadwick & Brooke Trantor
Starring Kate Morgan Chadwick, T.J. Linnard
Sex drives. We all have them. We are only human. Our embracing of our sexuality is something that Hollywood has been shy about for many decades, and it is only getting worse as the years continue.
One of the sad realities of American Cinema exists in how women aren’t allowed to be sexual on screen in realistic ways. In many American films, a woman’s sexual desires come from a male screenwriter’s point of view. There have been a few that got it right, but mostly, the need for female screenwriters (in general) is important to getting women’s voices heard and portrayed honestly. In films and television, Hollywood has a very male-tinged point of view regarding the female sexuality.
Rarely does it feel authentic. Much less how entertainment almost never explores the sexual desires of pregnant women. This should not be taboo.
It goes without saying, during the last couple of decades, mainstream cinema has shied away from overt sexuality in films. If it is not backlit, PG-13 sexual encounters set to saccharin pop tunes, Hollywood doesn’t want them.
Quite simply, this country has a hang-up regarding sex.
Enter the entertaining Independent Short film, “Oh, Baby!”.
Directed by Brooke Trantor and written by Trantor and star Kate Morgan Chadwick, this is a fast and funny film about a woman who wants to scratch her need, or as the promotional materials state, “Jane is on the hunt for a rockin’ one night stand before an impending arrival.”
Kate Morgan Chadwick is a complete delight as the lead character Jane. Jane is single. Jane is pregnant. Jane is very horny. Jane wants a night of sex with no strings attached. Jane is a human being with very human needs.
We meet her in a Mexican restaurant far beyond a state of waiting patiently. She is ordering hard alcohol and visibly jumpy. Perhaps she is nervous or maybe she just wants to get to it. She is short with the server, orders quickly, and forgets the name for salsa.
It is a funny moment that sets up her character (and the film’s tone) very well.
Jane is waiting on a man she met online, and the pressure could not be greater. She is meeting a complete stranger, she is very pregnant, and she is just looking to get laid.
Jane’s date shows up in the form of Ben played by T.J. Linnard. Ben is handsome and sweet and patient. The man is almost too kind and welcoming at first but Jane gets down to the “meat and potatoes” of why they are both sitting there.
Ben seems taken aback just a bit but seems to dig Jane well enough. At the very least, he is certainly intrigued by her energy. She just may have struck one night stand gold.
Once the two get to Jane’s apartment, director Trantor and co-writer/star Chadwick do not intend to get serious nor do they go too lite regarding the sexual encounter.
The almost immediate kissing and fondling gets heavier, and the scene plays out realistically, but with a natural humor.
As Jane is pregnant, the two struggle to find comfortable positions where she can enjoy it for more than a minute or two before it gets painful.
Their sex is awkward as the two strangers try their hardest to find the right position. In a funny moment, Jane seems to finally be in a position that works for both of them. As Ben thrusts inside her, he asks “Does that feel good?” While moaning in what seems to be a state of pleasure, Jane answers back, “No!”.
She was probably not going to tell him. For better or worse, she was having the sex that she so desperately desired.
All of us have had awkward sexual encounters which makes the scene play so well. Viewers will surely relate to these kinds of moments.
With the film’s finale, Trantor finds a sweetness and kindness that made me smile. I will not reveal how the film ends but it is honest and real and the emotion found is sincere.
It is always refreshing to see female driven films that speak honestly to a woman’s life experiences.
Trantor and Chadwick have crafted a very good short film that more than hints to their combined talents as writers, filmmakers, and performers.
Kate Morgan Chadwick is a delight in the lead role. The actress brings a fresh and funny frankness to her character. Jane does not exist as a horny stereotype. She is a single woman who likes and needs sex and wants to let her flag fly before her baby is born.
I look forward to seeing more work from both Brooke Trantor and Kate Morgan Chadwick. The two seem to have a symmetry to their collaboration that comes through in this piece. Let us hope that a feature length film created by these two talents is on the horizon!
“Oh, Baby!” (a clever title) is a warm, funny, and genuine film about a woman being a woman. The film’s truthfulness is quite refreshing. Great work!
NR, 10 minutes, Light Layer Productions