Reviewed by Veronica Benson
Ben(Reza Sixo Safai) and Kate(Taylor Cole) are living the American dream. Kate, American, and Ben, an Iranian immigrant, are a quintessential story of true love. Though they are from disparate backgrounds, they discovered that love has no nationality. Their marriage is as perfect as can be, except for one problem, they have been unable to have a child of their own.
They tried and failed until finally, a miracle happens, and Kate is pregnant. However, like all miracles, it comes with a cost. The baby is sick, and the key to saving it is in Ben and Kate’s fathers’ bone marrow. However, getting that bone marrow is harder than it sounds. Hamid, Ben’s father (Jay Abdo), is a virulent anti-American Iranian politician. Tucker(Tom Berenger), Kate’s father, is an equally virulent anti-Iranian American politician. Tom and Jay bring passion to their roles as men who refuse to entertain any opinion other than their own. A reflection that is now prevalent in American politics.
And this is where the comedy of errors begins. Kate and Ben have each lied to their fathers. Trucker thinks Hamid is a pistachio farmer, and Hamid thinks Tucker owns a hamburger stand. When they meet over dinner, the secret almost gets out, but Kate deflects the potential confrontation and announces she is having twins.
And of course, that is short-lived when the men are left alone. Tucker, the self-absorbed politician, can’t stop talking about politics, and things explode. Tom and Jay bring passion to their roles as men who refuse to entertain any opinion other than their own. A reflection that is now prevalent in American politics. When a story breaks by a news reporter Christine(played by Deinse Richards), which involves Hamid Tucker’s dream of becoming President, is put at risk. That means he will do anything to get Hamid out of the country to safeguard his reputation.
First Born could have been an excellent story on how cultural misconceptions can define us, but for me, some moments needed to be less over the top. I love the portrayal of the Veteran Joe (Robert Knepper), who has PTSD, a topic that needs addressing on a national level. I also appreciated using the birth of a child to mend differences, and if the movie makes us more compassionate about the views of others, then it is a job well done.
1st BORN/written by Sam Khoze, Mehdi Alimirzaee & Tarek Zohdy. Directed by Ali Atshani, Sam Khoze, and produced by Khoze and Ewin Avaness.
Uncork’d Entertainment released the film digitally on December 3 (iTunes, Amazon, Vudu, Google Play, Fandango Now, Xbox, and local Cable, among others).