Matrix wanted a younger sibling and was thrilled when little sister Einz was born. Einz means love, and she certainly was. But brain cancer ravaged her little body, spreading faster than her father, Dr. Sahatorn Naovaratpong, a Buddhist scientist, could research the disease that was robbing him of his beloved toddler. That’s why he and wife Nareerat chose what they did: cryo-preservation. Moments after she died, before even her third birthday, a team was there in her home to start the freezing process, and her preserved brain was sent to America for as long as it might take to find both a cure for her cancer and a way to regenerate her body.
Let me be clear: this is a documentary. This is a real family from Bangkok. You may already be familiar with their story, because at the time little Einz was the youngest person in the world to undergo cryogenics. Their story made international headlines and scandal wasn’t far behind – some angered that they’d taken the place of god, others worried for her soul, worried she’d be unable to find peace, and others still wondering what her life would be like should she wake up some vague time in the future when everyone she once knew, even if she remembered them at all, would be dead.
Sahatorn knows that the science will not catch up to him in his lifetime, so he’s bequeathed this rather large burden to his son, Matrix, in the hopes that he will continue down the scientific rabbit hole of bringing his baby sister back to life.
I’m not going to judge these people because obviously the pain of losing a child is unbearable yet must, sometimes, be borne. And I do understand, all too well, the yearning, the need, to have someone back.
Director Pailin Wedel does a great job of rounding up experts, from those that believe death is merely a problem to be solved, to those who see it as an ascension to the afterlife, but the heart of the film is with the family as they grieve a little girl who, to them, is not quite dead.