Fantasia 2021: “Baby Money”

Rating: 2.5 out of 5.

Babies are always a pleasant addition to a family yet could be stressful for some. And the reason for it is almost always a lack of money. Some parents look for a better way to make an extra dollar, legally, of course. However,  others explore a different avenue that is both desperate and dangerous.

Minny (Danay Garcia) just finds out the gender of the baby she expects – a girl. It’s an amazing day to celebrate such great news. But all that she manages to say at that point is to unexpectedly agree to participate in a quick heist which, sadly, goes terribly wrong, leaving three dead bodies behind.

What starts as a robbery turns into a survival thriller where nurse Heidi (Taja V. Simpson) and her son Chris (Vernon Taylor III, who has cerebral palsy in the film as well as in real life) Chris must fight for their lives. In the meantime, Minny, after leaving the crime scene behind must make her way back from where she ran away to rescue Gil, not realizing it will be the most surreal and unexpected turn in her life.

Directed by Mikhael Bassilli (who co-wrote the script with MJ Palo) and Luke Walpoth, “Baby Money” is a decent and well-filmed crime thriller with an element of drama. With a bunch of films made about robberies, “Baby Money” deserves special attention from the viewers. As an indie film, it delivers a high-paced action-packed robbery/hostage drama in which the police, as usual, delivers a low performance. But as for the concept, the film shows the magnitude of a struggling family and their willingness to put up with danger in order to take care of their incoming child. Was it worth it? Should Minny and Gil have made another decision? Would their plan ever work? Those kinds of questions are relevant to be asked throughout the film. However, the answer to all of them still won’t change – and it never did.

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