Opening 18 Aug 2005
Writing credits: Dominique Sampiero, Bertrand Tavernier, Tiffany Tavernier
Principal actors: Jacques Gamblin, Isabelle Carré, Bruno Putzulu, Lara Guirao, Frédéric Pierrot
Holy Lola, a French film directed by Bertrand Tavernier starring Jacques Gamblin and Isabelle Carré, is the story of a couple’s struggle to adopt a child. The film opens with Pierre and Geraldine traveling to Cambodia in the hope of making this dream reality. What they expect will be a short journey turns out to be a long struggle not only with adoption agencies and Cambodian bureaucracy, but also with themselves. On their first night in Phnom Penh they meet many other couples who have been in Cambodia for months trying to adopt a child. This turns out to be an omen for Pierre and Geraldine as there are in fact many more childless couples than children to adopt in Phnom Penh. Pierre and Geraldine quickly learn the ropes of getting around in Cambodia and search far and wide for a child to make their dream come true. In the countryside a child is thrust into their arms. After an initial feeling of euphoria they reject the child as that they fear the baby had been stolen and that the deal was corrupt. Finally, after months of searching, waiting, rejection, bureaucracy, and even bribes, Pierre and Geraldine are successful in adopting a baby girl.
Holy Lola is not only an excellent view of the difficulties and emotions couples face when they are unable to have children of their own and decide to adopt, but also an insightful look at the international adoption process. In addition to that, the film gives viewers an amazing view of the landscape and culture of Cambodia, which alone are enough to make this film worth viewing. (Shauna Keeley)