Seeds of Deceit

  • Miriam Guttmann
  • Netherlands
  • 2018
  • 21 min
  • Dutch Premiere
  • IDFA Competition for Student Documentary

The lead character in this tragedy of Greek proportions is the late Dutch fertility doctor Jan Karbaat, who inseminated dozens of women using his own sperm. Of course, not one of the women who came to the clinic for artificial insemination had chosen the celebrated doctor as a donor.

In her beautifully designed graduation film, which includes both stylized, staged scenes and footage of the enthusiastic doctor, Miriam Guttmann interviews two mothers and their offspring conceived using Karbaat’s sperm. The pernicious effect that Karbaat’s actions have had on all these lives is apparent from the heartrending testimonials. Amidst the anger, sorrow and incomprehension, however, there’s also curiosity: who was this man with a massive god complex and test tubes full of good intentions, who strode so brazenly across every ethical boundary?


  • 21 min
  • color
  • DCP
  • Spoken languages: Dutch
  • Subtitles in: Dutch, English
Miriam Guttmann
Mathilde Niekamp / Nederlandse Film Academie, Thomas Mataheru / Nederlandse Film Academie
Executive producer
Hanna Burkhardt for Nederlandse Film Academie
Sjors Mosman
Lianne Kotte

IDFA history

Dutch Premiere
IDFA Competition for Student Documentary

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IDFA history

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