My husband asked me not to watch Return To Zero. But I’m glad I did.
“You’re not actually going to watch that film are you? Don’t do it.”
Four years ago my husband looked into my eyes – and was it pleading in his voice or horror? I can’t remember – but he tried to dissuade me from sitting in a darkened room by myself and watching Rabbit Hole.
The film starred Nicole Kidman and Aaron Eckhart. And it was the story of a married couple who were trying to navigate life and marriage and friendships and getting out of bed and anger and forgiveness following the death of their only child – four-year-old Danny – in a car accident.
Six months earlier I had lost my daughter Georgie. And while everyone around me tried to convince me that seeing Rabbit Hole would be far too raw and painful that is precisely the reason I wanted to see it.
I wanted to be in pain and cry for my daughter.
I wanted to sit and stare at Nicole Kidman’s face and impassively decide if her performance as a broken, grieving mother felt real (it did. She was remarkable.).
I wanted to nod in recognition at the anger and the pain.
I wanted to feel sad. That’s what it comes down to. I wanted to feel sad.
This past weekend, I somewhat casually announced that I was going to watch the movie Return To Zero starring Minnie Driver and Paul Adelstein – the first movie made that deals with the topic of stillbirth. And my husband – for the second time – looked up at me from the couch and said, “Oh Bec, don’t do it.”
But I did.
I don’t know what to tell you about this film.
It was awful and brutal and healing and authentic.
Keep reading: How a devastating miscarriage changed this dad forever.
Based on the true experience of writer/director Sean Hanish whose son Norbert was stillborn, the film follows Maggie and Aaron whose first baby – a boy called Arthur – is stillborn just weeks before his due date. The film traces the ripple effect Arthur’s death has on them as individuals, their parents and friends and their marriage.
I won’t lie. I found Return to Zero excruciating to watch.