Thursday, July 15, 2010

Lack of Abortion as Plot Element

Well, nice to see that my posts are appearing on both Blogger and Facebook again. Let's see how long it takes this one to post, since I'm talking about Abortion.

I just watched the movie, Legion. Or tried to. You see, 3/4ths into the movie, I couldn't stand it anymore, and had to turn it off. I got sick of ridiculous attacks which back off from our handful of heroes for no apparent reason, other than to give the thriller enough time for character expose. The thought of God exterminating the entire human race unless one child born to a cigarette-smoking gas-station waitress is repugnant, even to an atheist like me. The plot is so bad that even Gabriel, the protagonist warrior-angel of the film, couldn't stand it, and had to revolt against Heaven. The demons are not demons, they're angels, which gua And, of course, we just needed to see a cute, little kid turn into a monster right before our eyes, as if that's somehow supposed to make us feel good about parenthood. But that's kind of my point, because once again, we see Hollywood trying to make a plot out of an unwed mother.

In Legion, she contemplated abortion, and changed her mind. The child then turns out to be the game-changer of the film, and that theme has been played over and over again recently. From Waitress, to Juno, to Knocked Up, and now Legion, screen writers are repeatedly putting forth poor girls who have unwanted pregnancies, but something stops them from terminating it. Then, naturally, the birth comes along, and we have our happily ever after. What on earth is behind this theme?

I find the trend mildly bothersome, but only mildly. After all, it's tricky to make a movie that can adequately describe the truth of a developing fetal brain being paramount to the ethics of an abortion -- without putting an audience to sleep, that is. It's far easier to put a heroine in a situation where her pregnancy is late, the decision to keep it has been made, and the birth is imminent to another disaster looming somewhere around her. It makes for exciting drama, and so I can forgive writers for taking that particular short cut.

Sure, I'd like to see a female character have an unwanted pregnancy, get an early-term abortion, finish high school, go on to college, and have a successful career. That would be refreshing.

But fuck, what a boring film that would be!

Eric