Inconceivable (2017 film)
Inconceivable is a 2017 American thriller film directed by Jonathan Baker and written by Chloe King. It stars Gina Gershon, Faye Dunaway, Nicolas Cage, Nicky Whelan and Natalie Eva Marie. The film was released on June 30, 2017, by Lionsgate Premiere.
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Jonathan Baker|
|Written by||Chloe King|
|Music by||Kevin Kiner|
|Edited by||Richard Byard|
|Distributed by||Lionsgate Premiere|
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While holding a crying baby, a woman fights with and kills a man, presumably her husband. Four years later, Angela (Gina Gershon) and Brian (Nicolas Cage) have a four-year-old daughter named Cora. The three are a happy, close family. Both are doctors, though Angela is on leave to be a full-time mom. A friend of Angela's, Linda (Natalie Eva Marie), introduces Angela to Katie (Nicky Whelan). Katie's four-year-old daughter Maddie hits it off with Cora. Katie says she left an abusive husband but does not elaborate. She also refuses to have her photo taken. Brian's mother, Donna, (Faye Dunaway) dislikes Katie from the start and questions her background, sensing something is off about her.
Angela confides to Katie she had trouble conceiving so she used an egg donor for Cora and is now pregnant again. Devastated after a miscarriage, she invites Katie to move into the guest house and be a part-time nanny while she recovers. One night, knowing Brian is watching, Katie steps naked into the pool. Brian becomes uncomfortable and leaves. Angela returns to work at the hospital part-time to give her more of a purpose, and Katie watches Cora.
Katie uses her free time in the house to go snoop through Angela and Brian's belongings, envious of their family. Angela comes home after work one day and catches Katie having sex in the guest house with whom she thinks is Brian, but is actually a woman (later revealed to be Linda). After the initial embarrassment, Angela relaxes somewhat and trusts Katie more, not believing she would ever have any interest in Brian. Linda excitedly tells Katie that Angela is going to ask Linda to be their surrogate, but Katie can barely hide how it upsets her.
Apparently Angela has one embryo left from the same donor that Cora was conceived from, and she wants to use that so the two can be full siblings. Katie confides to Linda that she is the donor, and that her daughter Maddie was also hers but born from a mother in Maine. Katie abducted Maddie as a baby because "the mother didn't take care of her" and now she worries that Cora is not getting enough attention either and wants to take her. She drowns Linda in a lake, and a couple later finds her body.
Four months later, Katie is carrying Angela and Brian's baby (and unknown to them, her own baby). Donna asks Angela what Katie get out of it. Angela says Katie will be paid forty thousand dollars and that she does not expect anything else. It is revealed in a flashback that Katie, whose real name is Tara, can no longer have her own children. As Katie's behavior gets stranger and more delusional – Angela catches Katie lying to a mother in a park about both girls being her twin daughters – Angela becomes more suspicious. Brian says everything will be fine when the baby comes, after which Katie will move on with her life.
A couple months later, Angela and Brian tell Katie they are getting a full-time nanny, and Katie angrily accuses them of wanting a complete stranger to raise their child. Brian defends her and says she just has different beliefs than them. It becomes clear that Angela and Brian are not as happy any more. Angela suspects Katie is planning to keep the baby and disappear, and accuses her of killing Linda because she wanted it for herself. Katie fakes early labor pains. Brian is furious with Angela and thinks she is taking meds and losing her mind.
The next morning, while Brian is at work, and Katie is sleeping in the girl's bed in the main house, Angela sneaks into the guest house to snoop and discovers Katie's secrets, confirming that she is mentally ill and she was a previous donor. Angela gets a DNA test for the girls but realizes that Katie has drugged her and rushes home, where she confronts Katie. Katie admits everything and stabs herself in the stomach, possibly harming the baby. Katie says she will tell everyone that Angela tried to kill her.
Katie is taken to the ER and an emergency C-section takes place. A healthy baby boy named Gabriel is born. But what is later revealed is that the DNA test came back and showed that Maddie and Cora were related to each other and to Katie, meaning Angela had told the truth. It is also revealed that she killed Maddie's parents before abducting her and claiming her as her own. In the end, Katie is locked up and Angela, Brian, Maddie, Cora and baby Gabriel are a happy family.
The project was unveiled during the 2014 Sundance Film Festival by Lindsay Lohan who said she would both produce and star in it. Producer and financier Randall Emmett said during a press conference announcing the project that audiences would be "really shocked when they see Lindsay take this role on". Lohan, who was also looking for a director, expressed interest in working with Jessica Lange and Juliette Lewis. In May 2015, Deadline reported that the film would mark Jonathan Baker's directorial debut. Baker also signed a deal to co-produce the film through his newly formed production company, Baker's Entertainment Group, with Emmett and his partner George Furla of Emmett/Furla/Oasis Films.
In October 2015, Baker announced through his Facebook page that Faye Dunaway and Gina Gershon were in talks to join the cast. In September 2016, it was announced Nicolas Cage, Faye Dunaway, Gina Gershon and Nicky Whelan had signed on to star in the film. That same month, Baker confirmed Wehlan had replaced Lohan and wrote on his Facebook page, "As for Lindsay Lohan not being a part of inconceivable..... The fans deserve to know, I loved her for the part of Katie. I fought for her to the very end. Sadly the studio has the final say and they just did not want to go in that direction. I think Lindsay is a very good actress." Baker later explained he tried to convince several major actresses to play the part, "Here's what happened, and here's the crazy thing: I go out to every major movie star—I just lost my mind—I went out for six months to major, major stars and they'd say, 'Who's the man?' I said, 'Are you kidding me? I'm offering you millions of dollars!'" Although his inability to convince a major actress left him frustrated, Baker changed his approach and offered a supporting role to Nicolas Cage, asking him to support the women.
Principal photography began on October 10, 2016 and was supposed to last three-and-a-half weeks but was subsequently reduced to 15 days. Dunaway broke her leg a few days before filming but Baker refused to recast the role, as it had been written specifically for her, and rewrote her part so that she would be able to perform sitting down, "She was in so much pain and she came to the set and she worked did what she needed to do, she's an Oscar winner, a great actress and this is a small come-back role that was written in 12 hours so that it would flow with the script."
The film was simultaneously released in select theaters and video on demand on June 30, 2017.
The film was panned by critics, with Baker's direction and King's script being highly criticized. On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 17% based on 6 reviews, with an average rating of 2.9/10. Frank Scheck of The Hollywood Reporter wrote that it was "something that both Nicolas Cage and Faye Dunaway will want to leave off their filmographies, and at this point that's saying something." Noel Murray of The Los Angeles Times was equally dismissive, saying that "the laughably stilted Inconceivable is mostly notable for who's in it — and how poorly served they are by the script and direction. First-time feature-director Jonathan Baker keeps the pace too slack and the tone too earnest — and sometimes fails to convey basic visual information about what's happening."
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