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Documentary Follows Farmer Building Brothel to Support Quadriplegic Wife

A GOOD MAN 640

The day after Rachel Rohrlach and her soon-to-be-husband, farmer Chris Rohrlach, announced they were expecting their first child, Rachel suffered a debilitating stroke that left her a quadriplegic.

Rachel was just 21. Her son was born while she was in a coma.

Fast forward several years later and the rigors of an Australian drought, raising their teenage son and the addition of a new baby proved to be a great financial burden, so Chris and two friends came up with the controversial solution to build and manage a brothel.

Their trials and tribulations, and the outrage of their small farming community, is captured in Safina Uberoi’s documentary, “A Good Man.” Although set in rural Australia, Uberoi is confident the documentary will resonate with American audiences.

“It is an intensely human story. I have shown it in remote mining towns in Australia, in a busy metropolis in India, in downtown Amsterdam, in a barrio in Venezuela, in a library in Washington. And everywhere the film elicits this warm and emotional response,” she told FOX411’s Pop Tarts after screening the film at the Los Angeles Film Festival. “At some point we all have to ask ourselves – what will I do for love? What am I prepared to do for the love of a friend, a husband, a wife, a lover, a parent, a child, a beloved pet?”

Another question the film then ponders is whether one can be a successful pimp, while at the same time maintaining the status-quo of a happy, healthy husband and father.

“Chris entered the brothel business all gung ho. He thought the hard part was building the brothel and after that it would just run itself. But Chris had no experience in the sex industry and as a result, once the brothel opened he was completely out of his depth,” Uberoi explained. “Even in Australia, where sex work is legal, the sex industry is still very problematic. Chris was a nice man who thought he could just run a 'nice' brothel. But it just wasn't that simple!”

As the realities of running such a business dawned on him, Chris just worked harder – managing the farm by day, running the brothel by night, and shuttling his beloved wife between the two locations.

“But the logistics just got harder and harder. The sleeplessness and stress took their toll on family life and also on his relationship with the friends Chris had established the brothel with,” Uberoi said.

Pimps and prostitutes aside, “A Good Man” also tells a poignant tale of a couple determined to stay together through sickness and in health as long as they both shall live. Even after Rachel’s tragic stroke, Chris dismissed doctor’s advice and took her home, married her, and has stayed by her side ever since.

“Everything about their relationship was surprising in a really wonderful and revealing way. I suppose the biggest surprise was the joy – that despite Rachel's quadriplegia, the drought, and Chris' debacle at the brothel, they could take such joy in each other, or their child, or ride on a motorbike,” Uberoi added. “I was blown away by how Chris and Rachel could laugh at each other, at life, and even makes jokes about what had happened to them. Other things too surprised me – like the fact that they clearly had a sex life and enjoyed it!”

"A Good Man" airs Monday, July 25 at 4:00 p.m. ET/PT and Thursday, August 4 at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT on the Documentary Channel

 

 

 

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