In Her Place
In Her PlaceDirector: Albert Shin
South Korea, Canada | Korean
Subtitles: Arabic and English
Eligible for Child Protection Award
Delicate but harrowing, In Her Place is the story of a wealthy couple from Seoul who make an arrangement to adopt the unborn child of a young girl from the countryside. As part of the bargain, the wife will stay in the home of the girl and her mother until the baby is born. When the husband returns to the city, this remote household undergoes a palpable shift in tension. The wife feels herself an interloper, trying to force herself into a new environment while the girl resents having her every move watched over by a stranger. Balancing gentle scenes of the three women attempting to form relationships with one another during an increasingly awkward time against the increasingly erratic behavior of the young girl, In Her Place builds to a suspenseful climax in which the adult characters must reckon with their potentially destructive decisions.
But it is not just the unsettling clandestine adoption that interests Albert Shin. He observes with unique subtlety and tact how the young girl is progressively deprived of her identity by the two women who are interested in her only as a childbearer, which for one means the end of poverty and for the other the fulfillment of her wish for motherhood. Director Albert Shin broaches issues of family and class with expertise and distinction.