Because most philosophies that frown on reproduction don't survive.

Sunday, March 31, 2019

Guest Post: Unplanned Reviews

The oldest three girls went to see Unplanned, the Abby Johnson biopic from Pureflix, at a benefit screening for our local crisis pregnancy center. The older two wrote up reviews and gave me permission to publish them.

Eleanor (16)

I figured I would go see this movie because my sisters were going to go see it. All three of us went and by the end all of us were crying.

Unplanned is the story of Abby Johnson, who was the director of a Planned Parenthood clinic in Houston. The movie starts when Abby is called into surgery to hold an ultrasound probe. She leaves the operating room after the abortion is finished and shuts herself in the bathroom crying. She has been watching the ultrasound screen and is in considerable emotional distress (as is the audience).

The rest of the movie focuses on Abby’s life before this dramatic scene. It shows us how she volunteered at the clinic eight years ago, as a parking lot escort. Here we meet a lady named Marilisa, a woman who is praying outside the parking lot gate. This character is what my sister Julia refers to as a ‘Nice, white, blonde prayer lady’. Marilisa is exactly that, and not much else. She is nice to Abby throughout the whole film despite them being invested in different morals on pro-life grounds. Marilisa isn’t much of a deep character.

We see Abby climbing the ladder inside the clinic, eventually working as a counselor. Abby gets married somewhere in the middle of the film, and, although actively taking pregnancy preventing medication, has a baby girl named Grace. This is much discouraged by her superior, the clinic director. Abby continues her work at the clinic (much to the disappointment of her family) and is promoted to clinic director. Abby goes to a big meeting for planned parenthood and is told that the number of abortions from the previous year must be doubled to fund a shiny new facility being built that will extend the age of fetus that they can abort. Abby is shocked at this because her morals are that she will not go past 18 weeks for an abortion. She gets reprimanded for asking a question about the increase in abortions for the next year.

Soon after this Abby is called in to hold the probe in the scene from the beginning in a spit perspective where we see Marilisa and her husband praying over barrels with aborted fetuses in them. Abby rushes over to the pro-life building to have a betrayed cry session with Marilisa and some pro-life workers. She says that she is going to turn in her resignation on Monday. After this Abby decides to join the pro-life workers in praying at the fence of the parking lot. The big boss from planned parenthood sues Abby under the premise of giving information to the public and being a violent threat.

At this point the best character in the whole movie is revealed. It’s a lawyer! He is the funniest character in the whole movie! The trial goes by like a breeze and Abby is proved not guilty. Then we skip ahead a bit and see that the planned pregnancy clinic is being shut down (at this point everyone in the theatre applauded). The sign for the clinic is pulled down and Abby makes a tearjerking speech in front of the fence. She then places two roses on the fence for her two abortions and says a smaller more tearjerk-y monologue as she places a letter to her two babies on the fence with the roses. We have a nice zoom out shot and see that the entire fence is covered in red and white roses, placed there by the people who heard Abby’s speech.

So that was what Unplanned was about. It was a good movie and I hope some more people go see it.

Julia (15)

I hadn’t heard of the film until a couple days ago when my Mom told me she had bought a ticket for me to see it. She mentioned that the movie was rated R for the abortion scene where you saw a CGI ultrasound. Not knowing very much about the procedures of abortions I thought that was a stupid reason to give the film a high rating.

Even going into the movie I was more worried about how cold I was going to be and if I was going to have a good view from my seat. 
The movie started off like a picture. The happy family who wakes up on a Saturday morning, The Mom goes to work, the daughter plays. At work we see our main character Abby, who has worked herself up to the top of the company and is in charge of a planned parenthood clinic. At work she is asked to help out with a procedure by manning the ultrasound. She watched the baby moving around at the small age of 13 weeks, and I watched the CGI ultrasound in pure horror. It was enough to make one sick.

We then travel through Abby's backstory where at an information table she is told that Planned Parenthood is trying to prevent abortions and find other options for unplanned pregnancies. There she signs up as a volunteer. She climbs the ladder of success for eight years while her parents and husband try and persuade her to leave, while she explains that a baby is just a blob of tissue until 18 weeks.

The movie did not have the strongest script or the best developed characters. We had the greedy and callous employer and the white christian prayer lady who prayed for Abby every step of the way.

This movie did have a strong emotional appeal. It had several heartbreaking scenes. Should it be rated R? Although your average action movie may have more violence and losing of limbs, these scenes are emotional and you might even say traumatic. I don’t think that this movie should be restricted to people over 18, but I don’t think this is the Christian movie to watch with your little kids.

Would I see this movie again? No, I probably not, but I don’t regret seeing it at all. It gave me something to think about. Will this movie last? No, I don’t think this movie will be a lasting classic. That being said I’m sure lots of people will watch it and I’m sure that some will have a change of heart.

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