Nova Frontier Film Festival Presents MOTHERS Film Review — Immigrant Families Torn Apart

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Old family photos hang on the wall of a small apartment. A grown man glances towards the photos as he replaces the old flowers on a shelf with fresh ones. He then grabs a chair and sits beside his mother. She is wrapped in a blanket, soundly sleeping in a faded floral armchair. After watching her for a few fleeting moments, the son touches her arm and she jolts awake. He reassures her that it is him, her son, but she remains silent. She only shifts her gaze towards the photos on the wall. The son brings her a photo of her with her children. As they both stare at the photo, they join hands. 


The film parallels two stories of mothers pleading with immigration officers to reunite them with their children. One story is of an Arabic refugee who has been separated from her children, and the other is of the immigration officer’s mother who went through the same thing 40 years ago in West Berlin. The two mothers are met with the same responses: “My hands are tied” and “This is the law.” With both mothers, the situation escalates to the point where the officers are shoving them out the door. 

In this way, MOTHERS lets us feel the universal bonds between mothers and their children — transcending time and cultural differences. Tragedy and loss are felt the same — no matter when or where. These are immigrant stories — then and now.

This is a story that feels deeply personal and leaves us reflecting upon our own relationships. It is not the film to see for a heart-warming story about mothers. However, if you want to see a story that illustrates the sometimes struggle and tragedy that comes with motherhood, this film succeeds. This writer hopes that all will see this film — as it deals with subject matter that is relevant and relatable.


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Creative Team:
Lorenz Christian Kohler (Director)

Nanda Ben Chaabane
Ole Eisfeld
Lorenz Christian Köhler

Length: 8 minutes

For more information on the Nova Frontier Film Festival where this film was featured visit the Nova Frontier Film Festival website

Images courtesy of Nova Frontier Film Festival


Sabrina Lee
Sabrina Lee

About the Author: Sabrina Lee

Sabrina Lee is a sophomore at Hofstra University pursuing a B.A. in Journalism. Raised in Orange County, California, she has been a gymnast, dancer, and coach. In her free time, she loves watching movies, eating Korean food, and practicing her poker skills. Sabrina's favorite place to be is in the audience of a Broadway show.

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