Rated PG-13 (for mature thematic material)
March 23, 2012
Rachel Hendrix , John Schneider, Jason Burkey, Jasmine Guy, Chris Sligh, Shari Rigby
Jon Erwin, Andrew Erwin
IDP/Samuel Goldwyn Films
More on this movie at IMDb.com
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CHRISTIAN MOVIE REVIEW
By Chris Carpenter
CBN.com Director of Internet Programming
- Filmmakers Jon and Andrew Erwin, known mostly for directing music videos for well-known Christian artists such as Casting Crowns and Skillet, make their full-length film directing debut with October Baby.
Starring John Schneider (Dukes of Hazzard) and newcomer Rachel Hendrix, October Baby is a faith-based movie about abortion that carries a subtle, yet strong pro-life message. Apolitical in its stance, the movie is actually a coming-of-age adventure designed to show a young woman coming to grips with her past.
Actress Rachel Hendrix portrays Hannah, a college student who dreams of a career in acting despite a litany of persistant health issues she has struggled with since birth, some fairly serious. These health struggles boil over when she collapses on stage while performing in her college play.
This sets in motion a quest to find out what is really wrong with her. What Hannah discovers is shocking. She is the survivor of a late-term abortion. Adopted by a doctor (Schneider) and his wife (Jennifer Price), these well-meaning parents were less than forthcoming about the events surrounding her birth.
Struggling to put all the pieces of her life together, Hannah sets off on a spring break adventure with several of her friends, including her "might as well be" boy friend (Jason Burkey) and the goofy BMac, played by former American Idol finalist Chris Sligh. Her friends mission is simple: to have a good time. But Hannah is seeking something quite different.
Hannah's search leads her to the door of a former nurse (Jasmine Guy, A Different World) who explains in graphic detail the tragic events of her botched abortion from nearly 20 years earlier. Guy's time onscreen is all too brief, but she delivers a riveting glimpse into the core of the abortion issue – the argument over whether life begins at conception or at birth.
It is interesting that the Erwin brothers have decided to take on such a controversial issue as their opening foray into feature length films. To their credit, they never shy away from their earnest portrayal of the topic. For this, the pro-life community will fall in love with October Baby.
Filmed among some gorgeous settings in their home state of Alabama, the Erwin brothers deliver a visual gem that should make their state's tourism board proud.
For all its faith-friendly themes, October Baby does seem to have an identity problem. It wants to be a sobering drama yet it is set within the context of a light-hearted, college road trip. While the humor certainly helps to lessen the tension of the topic, the Erwins may have been better served sticking exclusively to Hannah's dilemma.
Nonetheless, October Baby is a must see for those on the fence regarding the abortion issue. It clearly spells out the harsh realities of what life can be like for an abortion survivor as well as bringing to the forefront the poignant message of Psalm 139:16.
"You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed." (New Living Translation)
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