As millions brace for a legal decision that would irrevocably, detrimentally shape our future, it can be hard to localize the attendant feelings—fear, anger, helplessness—in anything but the present moment, much less cinema. Yet abortion has been subject for consideration since the silent era, reflecting concerns of their time and creators. So we can see in It Happens to Us: Abortion in American Film, Metrograph’s series curated by Emma Myers and featuring work ranging from Josef von Sternberg to Jenny Slate.

We’re proud to present an exclusive trailer for the retrospective, from which 50% of proceeds will go towards NARAL Pro-Choice America and additional U.S. reproductive rights orgs. True to the urgency of this exact moment it pulls no punches, interspersing famous faces with statistics on the indisputable nature of abortion’s necessity.

Says Myers:

“I’ve been trying to make this series happen for quite a few years and was genuinely surprised each time the idea was rejected for being too controversial or altogether unpalatable. I’m so grateful to Metrograph’s Nellie Killian for bringing the program to fruition. The selection of titles, which spans 100 years, includes many beloved box-office hits and critical darlings in which abortion is openly addressed. The initial goal was to make clear that the topic should never be surrounded by shame—something which has taken on a new level of urgency in light of the imminent threat to Roe v. Wade. Hopefully these stories will help evoke a more nuanced understanding of what access to safe and legal abortions means for women’s lives (one in four to be exact!)”

Watch the preview below, and in the meantime consider donations to local abortion funds.

The series is currently taking place at Metrograph in-person and comes to Metrograph at Home beginning May 13.

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