Recently, I had the privilege of previewing the documentary film, Somewhere Between. The independent film, directed by Linda Goldstein Knowlton, is a poignant glimpse into the lives of four teenage girls from different states that have one thing in common: they were born in China and adopted by families in the United States. In many ways, these young women are typical teenagers; attempting to discover who they are and to make sense of their lives. But they are also grappling with deeper questions about their identities. They are American girls growing up in American families, but as the documentary unveils, they also feel a sense of uncertainty about their past and a desire to understand the part that plays in who they are.
Although their individual journeys vary in many ways, there are areas where each of these young women must confront the same issues. We hear them ask many of the same questions as they attempt to understand why their biological families were not able to raise them. On a purely logical level, they understand that thousands of baby girls were abandoned in the wake of China’s “One Child” policy. But, for each of these young women, their own personal reality demands a deeper answer than that -- their stories, and the inevitable questions that emerge, are deeply personal.
Whether speaking directly to us through the camera or sharing their story with adoptive parents and adoptees, each of the film’s protagonists shares her journey with honesty and candor. They take us with them on their quest to discover where they came from, and the transparency through which the stories are told, makes us feel as though we are there experiencing it with them.
Somewhere Between has been very well received by critics and at film festivals across the country. Recently, it won the Jury Prize for Best Documentary at the Milwaukee Film Festival and at Hot Docs it won the Sundance Channel Audience Award. Playing in select cities over the next several months, the film is also scheduled to be available on DVD in the fall. I would highly recommend it.
If you’re an adopted child and would like to share your story with the readers of this blog, I welcome your comments below.