Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Pro-Life Under the Radar

Juno is a comedy-drama about a teenage girl who becomes pregnant. When she finds out she's pregnant, she decides to have a "hasty abortion." She ends up deciding against it. Why? She couldn't do it. She decides instead to carry the child to term and give the child up for adoption. This trendy, hipster girl decides to buck traditional liberal thought realizing that that the fetus inside her is a living person. Abortion is presented almost as an abusurdity.

In 2007, Judd Apatow created the film "Knocked Up." On the surface, it's a comedy about a one-night stand that ends up with the main female character pregnant. The two main characters are an independent woman who works in entertainment media and an unemployed stoner. The female lead's mother tries to convince her to abort the child, but she decides against it. This strong, independent minded woman could not abort the child and instead carries it to term keeping the child.

What do these two films have in common? Strong, independent women unintentionally become pregnant and chose not to have an abortion. Instead the two women take the child to term. In both cases, the women choose life and the men in their lives were supportive of their decision.

These are two Hollywood blockbusters with an unintentional pro-life message. In the words of The Guardian columnist Hadley Freeman the films "...present abortion as unreasonable, or even unthinkable." While it never may have been intentional, these two films provide a subtle anti-abortion message. In these two dramatic comedies, abortion is presented as an unthinkable option and a different choice is made.

While I know I'm three years behind the eightball on this discussion, I've just recently began thinking about these films. As Americans continue to change their mindset and become more anti-abortion, some movies are subtly starting to reflect this shift in attitude. It makes me wonder if this trend will continue as the views of the people continue to change.

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