On March 24 and March 25, the Schubert Center sponsored two screenings of The Dark Matter of Love as part of the 38th Cleveland International Film Festival. The Dark Matter of Love follows a family adopting three children from Russia and their journey building relationships with the help of psychologist Robert Marvin’s attachment therapy.
The Diaz family, Claudio, Cheryl and Cami, their 14-year-old biological daughter, travels to Russia to adopt Masha, age 11, and twins Marcel and Vadim, age 5. Throughout the adoption and bonding process depicted in the first year, the Diazes are assisted by Dr. Robert Marvin, Professor Emeritus at the University of Virginia School of Medicine, and another therapist, Nicole, who use techniques based on extensive research into the formation of parent-child relationships. The experience is far more challenging than either of the parents anticipated, but by the end of the film, the family is making significant progress to creating close bonds with each of the adopted children.
A Film Forum followed Monday’s screening. Director Sarah McCarthy discussed how she hopes that the film will provoke viewers to examine their own relationships with family members. Clinical psychologist and Schubert Faculty Associate Lisa Damour, CWRU professor Zoe Breen Wood, and CEO of Geauga County Board of Mental Health and Recovery Services Jim Adams, joined the panel to offer their perspectives working with local families, or their own experiences adopting children. PBS/WVIZ ideastream’s Dee Perry moderated the discussion.