1. Google Baby (2009)
This documentary by Zippi Brand Frank shows the details of the fertility industry in the age of globalization across three continents. The documentary Google Baby features an Israeli entrepreneur, Doron, who has turned creating families into a business. Doron calls himself “the baby producer” and provides customers with affordable solutions by making the most of technology and outsourcing.
Customers select the preferred genetic material online, which is then sent to India and implanted into the wombs of local surrogates — typically poor village women. When the pregnancy nears its end, the parents travel to India to pick up their baby.
2. Unreported World: Mexico’s Baby Business (2014)
Unreported World: Mexico’s Baby Business is a documentary about the booming surrogacy business in Mexico. Right at the beginning of the film, we meet Sofia, a one-day-old baby, and Diana, her 23-year-old surrogate from Mexico. Diana says goodbye to Sofia and states that she is happy for the baby’s parents from Spain.
However, the documentary then focuses on a much darker topic: the untold stories of the dark world of Mexico’s baby booming business.
Some surrogates claim that they have been neglected during pregnancies, and even left hungry. There have been cases when Mexican women weren’t given proper contracts and didn’t receive any compensation. Moreover, one surrogate claims she wasn’t told the donor was HIV positive, which left her worried about her health.
3. Cutting Edge: Addicted to Surrogacy (2009)
This Channel 4 documentary was first aired in 2009, telling us all about serial surrogates — women who have carried children for other people for five, six, or even up to nine times. These women claim that they are “addicted to the process”, and one of them even says she would do surrogacy forever “if her body allowed it”.
The documentary lets us explore both the thoughts and feelings of these serial surrogates, making us understand them and respect the path they have decided to take to help people have children.
4. HAVING OUR BABY: The Surrogacy Boom
The plot of HAVING OUR BABY: The Surrogacy Boom is set in Canada — another country that has witnessed a boom in surrogacy. While couples who can’t conceive a baby on their own consider surrogacy a blessing, others point to some complicated issues surrounding the process.
Health care in Canada is free, which makes everything less costly than in the United States. However, the law allows paying the surrogate only for the expenses, not for the “service”. That’s why many feminists, politicians, and ethicists are urging the government to change the law.
5. I’m an American Surrogate and I’m Carrying a Chinese Baby
As the title suggests, this surrogacy documentary features an American woman who is a surrogate to a Chinese couple. Lisa Ling interviews the surrogate and explores both the ethical and legal issues surrounding this taboo topic.
Apart from interviewing the surrogate, Lisa also speaks to the couples who opted for surrogacy. Moreover, she discusses legal matters with a professional in that field to get a better understanding of the legal matters regarding surrogacy.