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Unplanned: the story of an abortion worker turned pro-life activist


Published: 10 April 2019 (GMT+10)

Sometimes we might fall into the trap of intellectually affirming pro-life principles based on correct theology and medical information, but forgetting the real horror and carnage of the modern-day Holocaust of the unborn. The movie Unplanned is based on the true story of Abby Johnson, who went from a volunteer escort to Planned Parenthood director, only to experience a change of heart after being called in to assist in an abortion.

The movie has an R rating, which in my opinion is deserved. Abortion is gruesome, and the movie is brutal to watch in places. There are depictions of chemical and surgical abortions, as well as a depiction of abortion complications. There is also some mild profanity that viewers may want to know about beforehand. This is definitely not a movie for small children, but parents who want to discuss this issue with their teenagers may find this to be a productive conversation starter.

Abby’s story

Abby is a protagonist who can’t be pigeonholed into a neat category. She is complicit in the over 20,000 abortions Planned Parenthood performed at her clinic while she was director. She also killed her first two children in abortions. But this only serves to magnify the power of God’s forgiveness when she repents and leaves Planned Parenthood.

Even the other clinic workers are for the most part presented in a multifaceted way. They are sympathetically portrayed as friends and compatriots in what they believed to be a good cause. But they are also shown to put the ‘cause’ above their friendship with Abby.

There are a few characters who are presented one-dimensionally. The pro-lifers who pray at the fence are not very complex characters, though the friendship that grows between them and Abby is one of the enjoyable parts of the movie, and a much-needed respite from the horrors of what goes on inside the clinic.

Perhaps the most unidimensional character is Abby’s supervisor, Cheryl, who appears on the scene with all the charm of Cruella de Vil looking for a new spotted coat. She is shown as a ruthless ‘capitalist’ abortion worker, claiming that America wants abortions, so they will provide them. When she gives clinic directors the order to double their elective abortion numbers to pay for a new, state-of-the-art, baby-killing emporium, Abby challenges her, and from that point on, she is the object of her wrath.

An odd decision

One scene that struck me as strange was the effort of the clinic workers to fit in the abortions ahead of Hurricane Ike. It is a scene that demonstrates Abby’s willingness to go above and beyond, showing initiative to make sure women get their abortions, but the movie presents it in an oddly victorious mood, playing Mandisa’s “Overcomer” as they phone the women. When Abby’s pro-life husband confronts her about her day’s work, he comes across as more of a spoil-sport than anything else.

The real-life horror behind the movie

It is hard not to be relieved when the movie is over, but the scenes that are so hard to watch in the movie are played out in real life in Planned Parenthood clinics and others across the country. Girls who are too young to see this R-rated movie without a parent can go into one of these clinics and get an abortion without their parents knowing.

The Bible clearly teaches that every person is created in the image of God from conception onward, so abortion is murder. As such, Christians have an obligation to be pro-life. Yet statistics make it clear that in every church, there are likely women who have had abortions. It is necessary to clearly share the Gospel in such a way that post-abortive women realize that God will forgive their sin, and they can experience healing and restoration in Christ.

Helpful Resources

Is Human Life Special?
by Gary Bates and Lita Cosner
US $3.50
Soft Cover
US $10.00

Readers’ comments

Wayne T.
Apparently this film grossed $6,000,000 in the first week of being released in America alone. Obviously on those figures, there is considerable interest in the content of this film....and it follows that If the producers of 'Unplanned' have no intention of releasing it to a global audience, maybe there is a way for Creation Ministries to mediate on behalf of a potential and very interested viewing audience.
Mike D.
To follow up on Lance remarks about PASS. There has been so much SCIENTIFIC research that PROVES abortion is bad for the health of the women both physically & mentally. It completely destroys their line about for the health of the mother by PP for just normal abortion on demand. It's just like the left media with with evolution, abortion, true history of the founding of the US etc. They filter & alter facts to present only what fits their Godless narrative. Gods Grace & Forgiveness is PAID FOR & Greater than their sin if they'll choose to repent & accept it. We must continue the Great Commission. We must never lose heart even if results seem lacking. Remember this. Even Jesus Himself Gods Son didn't win everyone to Himself. So we can't expect to win everyone either but each one counts greatly & covers many sins!
Reminds me of the "joke" where someone is complaining to God why He hasn't sent someone to discover a cure for cancer etc. God replies, I keep trying but you keep aborting them. There is no telling the contributions to mankind lost to abortions! Gods Love & Forgiveness is still Greater & FREE FREE FREE!
Jaroslav L.
For decades we have been inconspicuously indoctrinated into today’ s patterns. As for sex issues, for decades we were indoctrinated by media with agenda that has actually satirized virginity and decent relations between dates and made them “obsolete” … regardless findings in science, the alleged hammer on the faith.

What we have got? Mothers either freely or forced by circumstances of how “modern” society lives, must feed their daughters with hormonal mess, so hostile to their bodies, in order to prevent them from conception with irresponsible pimply little boys. What a societal progress in comparison to boring old ages!
Robert K.
In New Zealand there has quite rightly been HUGE reaction against the hate that led to 50 deaths in the mosques... I am sickened by that tragedy, AND the 50 babies killed the same day by so-called doctors in abortion clinics. That day, and the one after, and the one after that. In fact EVERY working day in 'Godzone' New Zealand 50 babies are ruthlessly killed, on average.

Interesting, the 'reason' it is considered OK to kill babies before 24 weeks seems to be simply that they are considered to be UNABLE to feel pain! Also interesting is the bill before parliament seeking to legalise killing older people BECAUSE they feel pain. Can anyone else see the irony here?
Lance B.
I am confused by your first sentence stating that “correct theology and medical information” is use by some to affirm pro-life principles. I hope you mean this is willful ignorance of correct theology and medical proof as you make so clear in your closing paragraph. This act of infanticide destroys so many lives, both the babies killed and the survivors left in its wake. I certainly agree that tend to tend to take an intellectual approach when discussing this. How do this explain the depression and PTSD experienced by so many after abortions. They have even coined a phrase for the syndrome, PASS or post abortion stress syndrome. If this equates to removing an unwanted mole than why the extreme stress and studies to deal with the life altering stress?
Lita Cosner
Lance, I meant that the error is to stop with correct theology and medical information. Sterile intellectualism isn't enough, we need a sense of the horrific nature of what we're battling.
David S.
I agree that post-abortive women must understand God’s willingness to forgive all of our most heinous of sins, Praise the Lord. Sensitivity and mercy are absolutely critical in handling how we speak about this issue. But let us not forget the equally important message of wrath, judgment and eternal torment for those who do not repent of their sins and believe in Christ. I would rather see us all emotionally broken over our sin if it means we truly understand and repent. I’m not sure the church is very good anymore at making clear how offended God is at our sinfulness, often too fearful of hurting or offending. We don’t have to be mean. We are all sinners. But we shouldn’t blunt the hard truth, either. He is the balm of Gilead, but the Spirit wields a sword.
Mike D.
Isn't it so hypocritical that if you had 2 women at exact same point in pregnancy. One is involved in some sort of accident & the baby in her womb is killed the guilty party of the accident can be charged with some type manslaughter charge. That's only possible when its considered human. Yet the other woman can get an abortion & it's considered choice. Even nowadays after birth. So it's not human due to a women's choice? You can't have it both ways. The hypocrisy & double standards shown by the left are continually being exposed. But like God forgave Paul for all his murders He can & will forgive these too if truly repentant.

Please wake up Women! Also there are many wanting children that can't have them.
Liz H.
I believe that is why so many women are pro-abortion: the guilt of having had one. In the 70s, a woman could have been convinced that the baby was "an nonviable tissue mass". In this day and age, there's no way one cannot KNOW that an abortion kills a child.
Kirk B.
The R- rating was given due to "some disturbing/bloody images." But those scenes were milder than antenna TV surgical scenes which are not so rated. And since the rating was probably given by those who profess that the unborn baby is just tissue that looks like miniature humans, what should be so disturbing to them that some blood and "tissue" were shown? The R rating was clearly political even though they disclaimed it to be. Their hypocrisy is disturbing but not surprising, and effectively prevents young people from being educated and warned.
Rob R.
Holocaust of the unborn.

Sick that a girl can have an abortion but is not old enough to watch the movie. So glad that ticket sales are high and the leftists are unhappy at its success.

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