Lonely Woman Gets to Be a Mother Again When a Dumpling Comes to Life in the Pixar Short ‘Bao’

In the sweet Pixar animated short “Bao” by filmmaker Domee Shi, a lonely Chinese woman, who suffers from empty-nest syndrome, gets a second chance at motherhood when a dumpling she’s about to eat comes to life as a crying baby boy. The little dumpling fills up the woman’s quiet life, as it once did when her own child was young. Yet the dumpling began to grow up quickly and began acted like the moping teenager that he was. The final straw, however, came one night when the dumpling came home with a blonde girl who had a ring on her finger.

…one of her dumplings springs to life as a lively, giggly dumpling boy. Mom excitedly welcomes this new bundle of joy into her life, but Dumpling starts growing up fast, and Mom must come to the bittersweet revelation that nothing stays cute and small forever.

Lori Dorn
Lori Dorn

Lori is a Laughing Squid Contributing Editor based in New York City who has been writing blog posts for over a decade. She also enjoys making jewelry, playing guitar, taking photos and mixing craft cocktails. Lori can be found posting on Threads and sharing photos on Instagram.