Baby For Sale

  • 2004
  • 1 HR 29 MIN
  • NR
  • Docudrama

This made-for-TV docudrama grafts a crime thriller involving international traffic in black market babies to a conventional melodrama involving an infertile couple desperate for a child. Nathalie (Dana Delany) is a loving step-mother to her husband, Dr. Steve Johnson's (Hart Bochner), eight-year-old son. But she wants a child of her own, and neither in vitro...read more

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Reviewed by Robert Pardi
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This made-for-TV docudrama grafts a crime thriller involving international traffic in black market babies to a conventional melodrama involving an infertile couple desperate for a child. Nathalie (Dana Delany) is a loving step-mother to her husband, Dr. Steve Johnson's (Hart Bochner), eight-year-old son. But she wants a child of her own, and neither in vitro fertilization nor conventional adoption procedures have panned out. Money is no object, so over the objection their attorney, Kathy Williamson (Ellen David), Nathalie takes her quest online, and her posting — which includes information about the Johnsons' finances — catches the eye of foreign baby broker Gabor Szabo (Bruce Ramsay). Szabo invites the Minneapolis-based couple to come to New York City, where he shows them an adorable Hungarian infant named Gitta. But they aren't the only couple Szabo has hooked: While browbeating Gitta's mother, Janka (Elizabeth Marleau), who's ambivalent about giving up her child, Szabo introduces the Johnsons to the law of supply and demand at its most base. The Johnsons resist, so Szabo starts shopping around Gitta to other wealthy, childless parents-to-be. Nathalie and Steve seek legal redress and get a crash course in the elasticity of international adoption laws and put themselves on the radar of the FBI, which has been unable to shut down Szabo's baby autions. Would they be willing to participate in a risky sting, even if prosecution might result in nothing more than a slap on the wrist for Szabo? After some serious soul-searching, the Johnsons agree to try. Unfortunately, Janka has dug in her heels about keeping Gitta and both the Hungarian government and US Child Protection Services have entered the fray, starting a tug of war for custody. Nathalie and Steve must face the disheartening fact that helping the FBI may not have brought them one step closer to adopting the infant with whom they've fallen in love. Writer John Wierick and director Peter Svatek know how to jerk tears, and this fact-based sob is filled with opportunities to tug at the heart strings. It's undermined by Delany and Bochner's wooden nobility, who make it all too easy for the suavely sleazy Ramsay to steal every sceen in which he appears.

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  • Released: 2004
  • Rating: NR
  • Review: This made-for-TV docudrama grafts a crime thriller involving international traffic in black market babies to a conventional melodrama involving an infertile couple desperate for a child. Nathalie (Dana Delany) is a loving step-mother to her husband, Dr. St… (more)

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