SARANAC LAKE, NY—The recently formed Abortion Access Committee of Adirondack Voters for Change is proud to present the new feature film “Happening” at Lake Flower Landing, 421 Lake Flower Avenue, in Saranac Lake on Tuesday, August 2, at 7 PM.
A French film that opened in the United States this past spring, “Happening” earned the Golden Lion award for best picture at the prestigious Venice Film Festival last year. It is based on a true story and takes place in the early 1960s when both abortion and contraception were illegal in France and anyone who got an abortion or helped anyone obtain an abortion faced imprisonment.
In this hard-hitting film directed by Audrey Diwan, who co-wrote the screenplay with Annie Ernaux and Marcia Romano, Anne (played by Anamaria Vartolomei) is a bright, young student with a promising future ahead of her—including plans that would make her the first in her family to attend college. But when she learns that she is pregnant, Anne sees the opportunity to finish her studies and escape the constraints of her social background disappearing. She faces two choices: either (1) she can carry her pregnancy to term, abandoning all her hopes for her chosen career; or (2) try to find a way to obtain an illegal abortion, knowing that the second choice could lead to her being imprisoned or even kill her.
Disturbingly, this is a dire dilemma that millions of pregnant Americans could face now that the Supreme Court has struck down its own groundbreaking Roe v. Wade decision—one made nearly 50 years ago that guaranteed a constitutional right to abortion.
Immediately following the screening will be a panel discussion by Tess Barker, CEO of Planned Parenthood of the North Country; Dr. Eve Burns and Dr. James Pate, with Dr. Dorothy Federman serving as moderator. Asked to address the question, “What is the future of reproductive freedom in New York and our nation?,” the panelists will also discuss the film as well as such likely topics as individual citizens and other U.S. residents can make a difference in the battle to reclaim reproductive rights in America. Keep in mind that the majority of Americans believe that decisions of when and if to have a child are up to the person who is pregnant—typically, in consultation with her or their doctor or other healthcare provider.
“This event will be a wake-up call to action before it is too late,” said Jim Abendroth, President of Adirondack Voters for Change and a member of the Abortion Access Committee.
In French with English subtitles, “Happening,” which is not rated and contains adult content, is for mature audiences only. Masks will be required at the event, and a $10 donation is requested. Reservations are strongly recommended. Please RSVP by email to email@example.com if you plan to attend as seating is very limited.
Photo at top: Original poster for HAPPENING, a French film to be shown at Lake Flower Landing in Saranac Lake on Aug. 2. Photo provided by Frederick Balzac.