Unplanned

While the acting and directing could be better, Unplanned presents the experience of Abby Johnson, a Planned Parenthood (PP) clinic director, who does a complete 180° transformation on her views on abortion after viewing an abortion. There’s a lot of flashbacks that go from post-transformation to Johnson’s college days when she had two abortions and when she became a volunteer for PP.

The actress who plays Abby does a fine job, as do some other supporting actors, like Abby’s husband and parents, but many of the actors don’t have much to work with and I think could benefit from a script that gave characters more facets and personality. The director could also have developed those features more.

The film has some gory moments as it holds nothing back. There are scenes which feature the blood and gore which are part of the patient’s experiences. I wouldn’t bring children to this R rated film. While Gosnell, tells a story about abortion, it’s not as graphic, though the actions of Kermit Gosnell were more violent. Gosnell kept the gore to the minimum.

The film did inform me. I didn’t get have much knowledge of what it’s like to work in a PP clinic. The characters, except for the director, were shown as well-intentioned people. The first director does seem one-dimensional, but a lot of people do see their bosses as stereotypes. In this case the director is all about money and she does show what a business this is. As the director, Abby’s mentor, said, “non-profit is a tax status, not a business model.” The film does show PP’s sales techniques and vision for growth. Like many businesses, the goal is to grow and to pressure customers to use a service so there’s more money for a big new office or center.

The film has a message and it does a decent job of conveying it through the life story of Abby Johnson.  It did make me think and it seemed authentic.

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