Tomorrow will see the release of Unpregnant – a film by HBO that arguably glorifies abortion. The film’s plot revolves around a teenager who wants to get an abortion, but cannot, due to the laws in her home state.
So the teenager instead goes on a road trip with a friend, in a bid to be able to get an abortion. Staggeringly, the film is considered to be a “comedy”.
Whether someone is pro or anti-abortion, any sensible person would question such a plotline. Abortion is a very serious topic, and not something that should be used as a tool to generate laughter.
In this article, we look at the concerns caused by the film, and assess the damage it could cause.
What is the film about?
Rachel Lee Goldenberg directs the film, which is based on the book by Jenni Hendriks and Ted Caplan. The film stars Haley Lu Richardson as Veronica, a High school student. She has a mother that is deeply religious, which the film portrays as a negative thing.
The film starts with Veronica taking a pregnancy test, which comes back positive. Without even seemingly considering her options, she wants to get an abortion.
Yet Veronica lives in Missouri, a state that only allows a minor to receive an abortion with parental consent. This law is in place for a reason, not that the film is in any mood whatsoever to entertain this.
Veronica soon encounters her friend Bailey – who is played by Barbie Ferreira. The duo set off on a road trip to Albuquerque, New Mexico, which presents a long road trip.
New Mexico is the nearest option for Veronica. Strangely, Bailey does not even question Veronica’s intentions, and before Veronica has even finished the word “abortion”, Bailey is in the car, leading the charge.
So the two girls set off on the road trip. There is a lack of serious discussion about an abortion, instead, the focus is on comic relief. The film features a rather cringeworthy flashback and the usual scream-off that is associated with such films.
Veronica is able to eventually get the abortion, and gladly aborts the child, something that is met with comedy in the film, and is treated like Veronica just scored a last-minute touchdown to win the Super Bowl.
You can see the trailer below, we wouldn’t recommend wasting your time, nor money, in watching the real thing.
The film essentially glorifies abortion, and turns what is supposed to be a deeply personal and difficult decision into a comedy.
An abortion is not an adventure. It is not something to laugh about. This procedure ends the life of an innocent child – not exactly the sort of topic that is funny, unless the film is trying to appeal to psychopaths.
This film fails to take into account the long-term impact that abortion has on a mother. Very few will be laughing when looking back at their decision.
The film also fails to take into account the opinion of the father of the child. Veronica’s boyfriend, who is portrayed and well-mannered, gets no say whatsoever in the abortion, which further perpetuates the idea that men shouldn’t have a say in an abortion, which is deeply sexist at the very least.
No other options are ever considered during the film, it is as if an abortion is seen as just a regular run-of-the-mill event. The film neglects the option of adoption, an outcome which would at least present the child in question with an opportunity to live.
By normalising abortion, it has the potential for children watching this film to grow up with the idea that an abortion is absolutely fine, and part of life, equating it to a trip to the dentist.
There is no inner thought, no debate, no serious discussion. Just abortion being viewed as a big old joke.
Unfortunately, Christianity is portrayed in a very negative way throughout the film. The truth is entirely different – Christianity is a faith with over 1billion followers, huge numbers of which find the religion offers their life a deep meaning.
Veronica complains of her “Jesus freak” parents, with Christianity portrayed as something restrictive, draconian, and altogether, an evil thing. Would you see a different religion lambasted throughout a similar film?
The response to the film has largely been negative. There has been some praise for the film, unfortunately. The deep irony is that for those that see this film as a positive thing, they would not be living had they been aborted.
Many of those who consider themselves “pro-choice” have also criticised the film and its contents. Many have been vocal in their disgust that abortion has been turned into a comedic subject.
Needless to say, the pro-life community has been highly disappointed in the film and subject matter. It has led to stinging criticism for all of those involved.
Judging by the social media reaction, it seems many people are planning on cancelling their subscription to HBO.
Sadly, Unpregnant glorifies the topic of abortion, turning what is a deeply-difficult subject area into a comedy. It also highlights the worrying societal acceptance of abortion.
While the topic of abortion will always be worth discussing, this latest take on the topic is little more than a complete and utter travesty.