Cobie Smulders, Gail Bean, Anders Holm, Elizabeth McGovern
An inner-city high school teacher (Cobie Smulders) discovers she is pregnant at the same time as one of her most promising students (Gail Bean) and the two develop an unlikely friendship while struggling to navigate their unexpected pregnancies.
Unexpected is a simple, yet authentic and unexpectedly beautiful film about pregnancy and friendship, and deals with some serious social issues.
With Megan Mercier and Kris Swanberg's intelligent script, and the simple, yet feeling real story, the film manages to engage the audience with the reality of pregnancy, that can be a very complicated and confusing process, and it shows this with intense emotions through the eyes of two different women in two different moments in life, a 30-year-old teacher and and 17-year-old girl.
The film also raises some serious social issues by taking a look at socioeconomic and cultural differences, and race privilege, and also mentions the public education system of the state of Chicago, but unfortunately it doesn't explore or deepen none of the topics above mentioned.
Still the film is a good portrait of female friendship even though the relationship that develops between Samantha, the teacher, and Jasmine, the high school girl, takes some predictable turns.
Cobie Smulders probably gives the best and most genuine performance of her career as Samantha. Being pregnant herself while making this probably helped, but she is sweet and vulnerable, and she well delivers the insecurities about being a mother and the consequences it may have on one's identity. Gail Bean also delivers a solid performance as Jasmine, and she plays the role with surprisingly wisdom for her age - Hollywood should keep an eye on her. Elizabeth McGovern also gives a good performance as Samantha's mother.