Disclaimer from Editor: This is not a piece on the abortion debate, This is purely a review based on the film and filmmakers. Opinions are entirely those of the author.
The Paramount in downtown Kamloops recently had a showing of the film Unplanned put on by the Pro-Life society this past weekend. I decided to go and see if the art that was being shown had any value outside of its political context. And there was, but it came with a lot of issues speaking purely on the merits of the film.
The film follows Abby Johnson who, in becoming the youngest clinic director in the history of Planned Parenthood, has an experience that leads her into becoming an anti-abortion activist and follows her journey throughout.
The main positives that I was surprised about were the qualities of sound mixing and editing, which were very good at attempting to portray its theme. As well as the acting from the lead actress. The actress playing Abby Johnson, Ashley Bratcher, gave a very compelling performance of portraying her real-life counterpart. Even the plot, for the first third, was quite compelling in its attempt to capture both sides of this very heavy topic.
The main negatives do come down to a couple of factors that can objectively be admitted. One, the acting from the husband and almost the rest of the cast was surprisingly bad. Like, laughably bad, however, it has this effect of having an audience feel a bit uncomfortable due to comically bad acting being paired with such a serious issue. And, whatever opinion on the matter you may have, it can be stated that the rest of the movie stops trying to portray both sides of the topic and lean headfirst into the side of pro-life.
A film can be political, however, if it stops trying to be objective in its stance on the matter and turns straight into a hit piece, the information being provided stops having credibility. Example, if I was a vegetarian, and I was debating a meat-eater, and all of a sudden, I just started coming up with multiple facts that aren’t as credible as the objective truth that was presented at the beginning of the argument, this then gives my viewpoint a tainted perspective, which will lose people whose opinion on the matter is undecided.
Overall, I wouldn’t recommend Unplanned, not due to its viewpoint on a political matter, but because its tone goes from walking a tightrope and staying a movie turns into an almost propaganda hate piece on an organization with facts that aren’t present as true, but rather just spiteful in nature.