Seeing Abortion Laws From a Teenager’s Point of View
Eliza Hittman explains how she came to make her timely odyssey “Never Rarely Sometimes Always,” the unusual movie about abortion rights that makes bureaucracy the villain.
By Reggie Ugwu
April 3, 2020
Before writing her new movie, “Never Rarely Sometimes Always,” about the odyssey of a 17-year-old girl in present-day Pennsylvania seeking a legal abortion, the director Eliza Hittman embarked on a journey of her own. Hittman makes movies of quietly operatic intensity about vulnerable characters in unremarkable places. To find their narratives, she begins in the field, exploring prospective locations like a sculptor wandering a quarry.
Hittman, who is 40 and lives in Brooklyn, traveled by bus to a blue-collar town in Pennsylvania, where state law forbids minors from receiving an abortion without a parent’s consent. There, she toured so-called crisis pregnancy centers, which counsel against abortion regardless of circumstance, and posed as a woman who feared she might be pregnant and needed advice.
When abortion gives birth to art
Local artists have tended to steer clear of this taboo topic, but examples exist
Mar 29, 2020
Lisa Gwen Andrews
For, or against?
That is not the debate. Not here, not now.
This is, however, a mere first attempt at illustrating the woes of women and individuals who have tried, over the years, to visually portray the emotion and experience in relation to the topic of abortion and women’s reproductive rights.
How a Crop of New Movies Is Changing the Narrative About Abortion
By Suyin Haynes
March 13, 2020
Bridget sits at home on the couch and pops four pills into her mouth, two inside each cheek. “I have to keep them here for 20 minutes,” she says smiling, her cheeks slightly bulging. She’s starting the process of a medical abortion. “Do I look cute?” she asks Jace, who she’s dating casually. “I feel cute.” It’s a low-key moment, and one of several scenes in Saint Frances, a recently released dramedy that treats abortion, and the complexities of motherhood and womanhood more broadly, with compassion and without stigma.
As several U.S. states undergo their own battles over abortion laws in the courts, a number of new independent films are taking a more quotidian, and decidedly human, approach to depicting the procedure and the decisions that lead up to it.
“Never Rarely Sometimes Always,” Reviewed: Eliza Hittman’s Ingenious Portrait of the Bureaucracy of Abortion
By Richard Brody
March 12, 2020
With her third feature, “Never Rarely Sometimes Always,” the writer and director Eliza Hittman accomplishes something extraordinary: she expands her method and her style into a vision of the world. Her first feature, “It Felt Like Love,” from 2013, centered on a teen-age girl in a Brooklyn community that Hittman knows well, and extended the tendrils of the protagonist’s dramatic experience into the broader life of the neighborhood. In her second feature, “Beach Rats” (2017), she did something similar and carried it further, scratching and scraping the surface of social connections to reveal the passions and prejudices underlying it. Now, in her new feature, “Never Rarely Sometimes Always”—a stark and harrowing story of a teen-ager’s quest to get an abortion—Hittman creates an intimate drama that’s also a story of the social fabric and, in particular, its bureaucratic abstractions and administrative minefields.
New film shows harsh realities of abortion restrictions
March 11, 2020
There have been several movies about abortion, but none quite like Never Rarely Sometimes Always. That’s because this compelling dramatic film, written and directed by Eliza Hittman, takes an unflinching look at the harsh realities of what a 17-year-old in rural Pennsylvania has to go through to get an abortion for an unplanned and unwanted pregnancy. The teenager at the center of the story is a fictional character named Autumn Gallagher (played by Sidney Flanigan), but the obstacles and emotional journey that Autumn experiences are very real for anyone who’s been through a similar situation.
Focus Features will release Never Rarely Sometimes Always in select U.S. theaters on March 13. It has already won prestigious awards, including the Silver Bear (second-place prize) at the 2020 Berlin International Film Festival and the Special Jury Award for Neorealism at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival.
Argentine filmmaker throws spotlight on abortion amid legalization push
Updated: March 6, 2020
BUENOS AIRES — Amid a renewed push in Argentina to legalize abortion, filmmaker Andrea Testa hopes to spotlight the plight of young women in a country where campaigners say that every three hours a girl between 10 to 14 years old gives birth.
Testa’s new documentary, “Girl Mother,” follows women from socially vulnerable backgrounds who are forced to have children under Argentine law where abortion is illegal, except in cases of rape and when there is danger to life or health.
Abortion is Normal: the emergency exhibition about reproductive rights
In an ambitious, multi-disciplinary exhibition, a range of artists from Cindy Sherman to Nan Goldin, are aiming to dismantle stigma and raise funds
Mon 13 Jan 2020
A week into 2020, and the US political discourse on reproductive rights is already at a crossroads. On 6 January, 39 Republican senators signed an amicus brief urging the supreme court to reconsider Roe v Wade, the 1973 supreme court case that secured the legal right to an abortion. This comes on the heels of a year in which Alabama’s governor, Kay Ivey, signed into law the Human Life Protection Act, stating that doctors who perform abortions can be sentenced to life in prison. On 15 May, the day the law was signed, Jasmine Wahi, co-founder and director of Newark-based arts not-for-profit Project for Empty Space, texted artist, activist and fellow SVA MFA instructor Marilyn Minter. “We have to do something,” she wrote. Within minutes, Minter responded that she was game.
2019 Was a Terrible Year for Abortion Rights. TV Did Better – Kind Of
Hollywood has a long way to go in terms of depicting women of color and mothers getting abortions
By EJ Dickson
Dec 20, 2019
2019 was a mixed bag when it comes to reproductive rights. While the year saw draconian abortion legislation introduced in states like Alabama, Georgia, and Ohio, the nationwide backlash arguably lent greater momentum to the abortion rights movement, catapulting it to the center of cultural conversation.
As a result, the once-taboo topic of abortion has become increasingly commonplace in popular culture, per an annual Abortion Onscreen Report released by ANSIRH (Advancing New Standards In Reproductive Health). Released yesterday, the report found a record number of TV shows in 2019 featured a discussion of or plot-line centering on abortion, thanks to shows like The Bold Type, Shrill, Orange Is the New Black, and Happy.
What Would the World Be Like if Men Had Periods?
December 12, 2019
By Monica Baro Sanchez (El Toque)
HAVANA TIMES – If men had periods, at least the first day they came on would be declared a holiday. I don’t know about other women, but I hate working the first day of my period. Sometimes even the second day, too. I can even hate talking or just seeing people.
I have never known what it’s like to suffer so much pain in your ovaries that it has you curled up in bed, in a chair at school or at work, or bent over in the middle of the street, the kind that gives you nausea and makes you vomit, which calls for pills, injections, infusions and hot water bottles on your lower abdomen; but I do always feel bad every time I have a period. I’m on my period right now.
These Photos Of Women Affected By Illegal Abortion Are Deeply Moving (NSFW)
Last Updated November 15, 2019
Scotland-based photographer Camila Cavalcante spent the last three years working on a project to push the conversation about abortion and scream for all women to have autonomy over their own bodies, regardless of their circumstances.
In Brazil where she grew up, abortion is only legal if it endangers the mother’s life, if the foetus’ brain doesn’t develop in the womb or in rape cases. Updates to abortion law and the fight for reproductive rights continue all over the world while women are still forced to take dangerous avenues to terminate an unwanted pregnancy. Between 2016 and 2019, Camila photographed herself with 50 women from different backgrounds with different stories, all united by having been affected by illegal abortions. The result is an incredibly moving photobook, For The Lives Of All Women, which combines the personal and the political, documenting their individual experiences and why things so desperately need to change for everyone.