Synopsis

A frightened and irresponsible girl and an emotionally conflicted woman are brought together under tragic circumstances in this independent drama. Stephanie Daley (Amber Tamblyn) is a 16-year-old girl who while on a school-sponsored ski trip collapses in a puddle of blood; a medical examination reveals that Stephanie has recently given birth, and in a nearby bathroom a newborn child is found dead, flushed down a toilet with its mouth stuffed with toilet paper. While Stephanie insists the child was stillborn and she had no idea she was pregnant, she is charged with killing the infant, and court-appointed psychologist Lydie Crane (Tilda Swinton) is assigned to interview the teenager. Lydie has her own issues with possible parenthood; she's been struggling to have a child after a recent stillbirth, and the matter is taking a toll on her marriage, with her husband, Paul (Timothy Hutton), seeking solace in the arms of another woman. As Stephanie shares with Lydie her feelings about her relationship with her parents, how she lost her virginity, and her growing conviction that God gave her a child as a form of punishment, Lydie finds herself dealing with her own feelings about the child she lost. Meanwhile, Right to Life and Pro-Choice groups threaten to turn Stephanie's trial into a media circus. Stephanie Daley premiered at the 2006 Sundance Film Festival. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi

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