It’s about time us millennials become adults and thus, make films about becoming adults. Carlos Marques-Marcet’s The Days To Come is about that jolt from young adulthood into actual adulthood. It’s also about how the degree of difficulty in stepping into adulthood varies even withing cis heterosexuals. Vir (Maria Rodriguez Soto) reveals the pregnancy to her coworker. He then tells her to keep it a secret, which is revelatory of the kind of labour laws in Catalonia. Her boyfriend, Lluis (David Verdaguer), gets congratulations from his friends. They take him out to an impromptu game of street soccer. The camera closes up on him as he realizes that he may not get boys nights out like this anymore.
Rodriguez Soto is actually pregnant during the production of Days To, and Verdaguer is her actual boyfriend and her baby’s father. Verdaguer and Marques-Marcet were wrapping up a different film when Rodriguez Soto discovered her pregnancy. And all three thought it was a good idea to fictionalize the process, which is a gamble that works. This bit of trivia informs the film’s experience, as their characters do things like choose a name for the baby (Lupe Verdaguer Rodríguez). Their laughs seem more real, adding to the undertone of tension between their characters whose differences start surfacing. As the film progresses they’re not just fighting about certain baby names.
Days To Come also depicts the other sources of the arguments that these characters begin to have. One of those things is what looks like a YouTube video about artificial births. Both have contradictory methods about different artificial and natural methods of birth. Lluis makes a comment about how modernity doesn’t require pain anymore, which turns into an argument. This comment, as well as the dialogue, obviously reveals a lot about their characters. But what the cast and crew’s semi improv dialogue exposes is the kind of sentiments that people have against their generation. There’s also a lot of thought in the production design here, showing that their apartment lacks a lot of things that other people may have.
Vir’s pregnancy can end like most pregnancies do. Either she gets an abortion, she miscarries, or actually gives birth to her baby. There are moments when it feels like Lluis is taking over Days to. This is especially true in depicting his ethical quandaries and him turning into a male version of a walking mommy blog. But thankfully, the film steers back to depicting Vir’s struggles. The scene where she gives birth has a cinema verité effect and it doesn’t surprise me if this scene is actually depicting Rodriguez Soto giving birth. And again, the film’s colours and textures say so much about the realities of childbirth that pop up despite modern improvements.
The Days To Come comes soon to OVID.