By Alieta Belle & Jenny Blyth
60 Minutes, includes 20 page booklet
Reviewed by Molly Remer, Talk Birth
Jenny Blyth the author of the book Birthwork, is also a filmmaker who co-created the film The Big Stretch with another mother. The particularly special thing about this film is that it is all about women sharing their own experiences and feelings–unlike many current birth movies there are no “experts” present in the film (other than the true experts–women themselves!), the focus is on the families preparing for birth or reflecting on their past birth experiences. The many topics addressed are insightful.
The film’s emphasis is on, “Women in different stages of pregnancy and preparing for a natural birth reflect on how they and ‘stretched’ in everyway – emotionally, physically and spiritually” and I enjoyed this “stretch” theme that ran throughout.
Introducing new scenes/topic is neat artwork and the images in this film in general are particularly gorgeous. In one exception, I was taken aback by footage at the close of the film of a totally naked man riding a bicycle and feel I should warn other viewers to be prepared for that!
The DVD is accompanied by a 20 page booklet full of questions that carries the themes from the film into personal questions to increase self-awareness during pregnancy.
The Big Stretch is a unique and beautiful film in which women’s voices are clearly represented. There are no titles, no degrees, no qualifications listed. This film is a perceptive “motherful” look at the many stretches of birthing: physical, emotional, mental, and cultural.
Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of the DVD for review purposes.
Review previously published at Citizens for Midwifery.