Easily one of the most important documentaries on inter-country adoption, Mercy Mercy gives a rare look at all participants in the adoption process, including the parents who give their children up. Two loving Ethiopians parents, Sinkenesh and Hussen, have just been diagnosed with HIV and told they have only a year to live. They make the painful decision to give their two youngest children up for adoption, handing them over to a Danish family. In an emotional departure, the Danish family promises to stay in touch and the adoption agency agrees to broker the relationship. What seems like the best decision for the children becomes a series of tragic and painful events for all, unveiling that the well-being of children is not always the main priority in the adoption process. Greed, selfishness, unrealistic expectations and skewed cultural perspectives idealizing one way of life over another collide in this powerful story.
Review: A friend of mine had seen this film over Hot Docs and encouraged me to see it. Big mistake. This docu is not a bad film. It is what a true docu should be about. It is upsetting and will not leave your mind even days after watching it.
For a world that thinks that picture perfect People magazine shots of Angelina Jolie and her adopted brood makes for an easy international adoptions – this is not always the case. This film examines how a child’s cultural background could clash with their adoptive parents if the child and their parents are not properly supported. Sometimes it is not all happiness and rainbows. Sometimes there is grief that permeates and will grow into other pain and darkness at the hands of these lil people who don’t have the voice and the strength to verbalize it to their new parents. The kids who are promised the new life by these adults are sometimes the forgotten causalities.
This film will leave you with more questions than cookie cutter answers of what international adoption entails for families, governments and adoption agencies.
I won’t say much more. I encourage you to watch this film online or when it comes to your town.