Natural Selection (2011)

6 Nov

Natural Selection swept the prizes at the SXSW film festival, and I was super excited to have a movie night out to the 3 Rivers Film Festival with Sandy and Mr. Beez to see it!

Rachael Harris (who I know I’ve seen in a million things before, I just can’t remember what) plays Linda White, who is an ultra-religious Christian, and tragically barren.  Unbeknownst to her, her husband has been secretly visiting a sperm bank for years.  He has a stroke during a visit there, and she learns of his secret.  As he lies in the hospital with grim prospects, he asks her to find his biological son.  Linda sets off to fulfill his dying wish, and disaster of course ensues.  The son is a drug addict on the lam, and the two make for an unlikely but comic pairing.

In the first third of the movie, Natural Selection has several hilarious moments. I was happy to genuinely laugh out loud, because there aren’t many movies that get me to do that.  The last two thirds of the movie were more serious–it still had funny parts, but less laughter.  At a certain point, the plot turns become markedly more unlikely, but the film remains very good and had a very satisfying end.

Harris usually plays high-strung, irritated side characters, but she shows depth and relatability in this central role.  Even though her imdb biography has a mile long list of performances, the quality of her performance in “Natural Selection” explains why many critics are calling this her “breakthrough performance.”

I doubt this film will play at many other theaters in the Pittsburgh area, but it does have one more showing this week during the 3 Rivers Film Festival (I think on Tuesday).  If you’re able to see it, it is clever, and funny, and well worth your time.  There aren’t any big explosions or special effects, so if you can’t make it to the theater, nothing would be lost by seeing it on the small screen once it comes out on DVD.


One Response to “Natural Selection (2011)”


  1. 30 before 30 « beezuskiddo - November 23, 2011

    […] a film festival. Attended the 3 Rivers Film Festival in November, links here and […]

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