OPINION: “Unpregnant” Movie Review

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HBO Max’s “Unpregnant” stars Haley Lu Richardson (right) and Barbie Ferreira (left) as the two characters leave the state of Missouri to get an abortion. 

On Sept. 10, HBO Max released their newest original film,Unpregnant.” With a title like that it was sure to turn heads and raise questions. The film directed and written by Rachel Lee Goldenberg is based off of the novel of the same name written by Jenni Hendriks and Ted Caplan. 

The film showcases the controversial topic of abortion. We follow the journey of our straight-A brainiac main character Veronica (Haley Lu Richardson) as she fights with what is right and what is wrong after she finds out she is 17 and pregnant. Veronica is depicted as the girl next door who has her entire future planned out, but like life likes to happen, her world and her ideas of her life get interrupted. 

This film complements today’s society to a tee. With the novel the film is based off only coming out in 2019, this film is just as relevant and topical as it can get. With issues such as defunding Planned Parenthood and protests about women’s rights to choose, you couldn’t have picked a more subversive and dividing topic. 

Goldenberg takes this challenge straight on. “Unpregnant” is set in the conservative state of Missouri. This fact plays as a major character in the film, as the biggest antagonist is Veronica’s own internal struggle of moving forward with an abortion. As she is dealing with this struggle, Veronica reaches out to a broken friendship that has parted its ways years before. Veronica asks her ex-best friend Bailey (Barbie Ferreira) to help her on this journey as she must drive states away to even get the procedure because underage abortions need parental approval in many states and some states have even restricted abortions even more. 

Throughout their journey we get to see the internal conflict that happens in Veronica’s mind. Goldenberg does a fantastic job of showing how the choice to abort can take a real toll on someone. I feel as though this movie does a great job of showing both sides of the controversial topic and reiterates all the thoughts that go through a woman’s head when she finds out she is pregnant. For our main character the choice of abortion was the right choice for her. 

I find it very important that this movie is accurately rated at PG-13. This makes it available for young women in middle and high school to also watch the film. As someone who grew up with a mother that always let me know I had the right to choose, this movie still made an impact on me. I can only imagine the impact of this movie on a young girl who never really thought that she had options, but just like Veronica, yes, you do.  

Jessica Goodwin is an opinion writer. Contact her at [email protected] 

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