‘What to Expect’

Atlanta Parent invited 20 moms, many of them pregnant, to catch a screening of  What to Expect When You’re Expecting, a new film shot in Atlanta and inspired by Heidi Murkoff’s mega-selling guidebook to maternity.

 

by Julie Bookman

What were we expecting? A romantic comedy about the many ways women endure and are affected by pregnancy. What did we get? A big hit, at least in the minds of the 20 moms who escaped their home duties on a recent weeknight to see the new film starring Elizabeth Banks, Cameron Diaz and Jennifer Lopez.

Our moms collectively gave the film a thumbs up. Comments ranged from “a feel-good movie with a great cast!” and “realistic, funny, a little sad and emotional” to “Chris Rock’s one-liners rocked!” Rock leads a comic-relief pack of stay-at-home dads who stroll through Piedmont Park with an overload of tots and baby equipment. These movie-critic moms especially liked how the screenplay intertwines the specific stories of several couples to effectively capture the many different aspects of conception and pregnancy. “My heart went out to the Jennifer Lopez character,” said Esperanza Singley, a Jonesboro mom of four, “because I also dealt with infertility.”  The movie “was everything I expected it to be,” said Anora Wilson, Marietta mom of two. “It covered all kinds of situations and personality types.”

A favorite character, hands down: Wendy, played by Elizabeth Banks, owner of an Atlanta boutique called The Breast Choice and author of a cheesy children’s board book called Milk It! Just a quick string of comments from our mom panel about Banks’ performance: “She kept it real…gave it her all…showed remarkable range…honestly captured the many things we go through in pregnancy that no one will ever understand until they’ve been there themselves.”

“I didn’t like how perfect Cameron Diaz looked, but this is a funny and well-put-together movie. A great date night for moms and dads.”
– Vijal Bivek, Marietta, mom of two

“All of the women were way too skinny. By eight-nine months, no one has thighs that look that good…but I teared up a lot more than I thought I would.”
– Nydia Okuma, Smyrna, shown here before delivering her son, now 8 months old

“I had all my children naturally, so I was glad to see that depicted. It touched my heart. I’m thinking maybe we’ll go for baby No. 7.”
  – Kim Petty, Lithonia, mom of six (so far)

“The stay-at-home dads were hilarious! I laughed and I cried so hard, I thought my water would break!”
– Kira Mesi of Alpharetta, due to deliver her second boy in late July.