Coming Attractions,  entertainment,  Film Festivals,  Film Reviews,  Focus Features

Sundance 2020: Never Rarely Sometimes Always Will Blow Your Mind

Planned Parenthood was an important part of my young life.  This was the place my mother took me to get educated about birth control options.  It was a safe space which provided many mothers and daughters with the opportunity to make an informed decision about having safe sex.

In recent years, our government has shut down many Planned Parenthood locations around that country along with a plethora of abortion clinics.  If a woman chooses to terminate a pregnancy, in some instances, one would be required to travel several states.

Any woman coming to an abortion conclusion is not a decision that was made lightly.  Some have been raped.  Some do not possess financially sound lives to welcome an additional family member.  Some simply are not mentally prepared to be a mother and some simply feel as though they can’t proceed through life with another mouth to feed.  Whatever the case, when you cross the picket lines and hit that threshold there is no going back.

Never. Rarely. Sometimes. Always.  These are words any young girl or woman has heard inside the examination room of a clinic.  Not just any clinic…an abortion clinic.

Autumn (Sidney Flanigan) is a stoic teen cashier in a rural Pennsylvania supermarket who has suddenly found herself facing an unintended pregnancy.  Only abortions in the state of Pennsylvania require parental knowledge and support. So Autumn and her cousin Skylar (Talia Ryder) snatch some cash and board a bus headed to New York City.

Writer-director Eliza Hittman uncomfortably, yet masterfully creates a a whole narrative through gestures and details making subtext just as vital as the written dialogue.   Shot on 16mm film, Cinematographer Hélène Louvart captures Flanigan and Ryder, in intimate extremes close-ups accentuating the complexity of their  minimalist, understated emotional  performances. with a fearlessly story of a how. a teenage girl makes a massive  journey emerging in a tale of reclaiming her body and her spirit.

Eliza Hittman’s direction of the film shook me to my core and her commitment to. getting every detail a nuanced an precise as possible is impressive and extremely respectful to the thousands of women who may or may not have come out on the other side mentally and physically intact.

Never Rarely Sometimes Always is a must-see film. Whether you are pro-choice, pro-life, a daughter, friend or parent you will leave theaters will some definitive emotions, opinions and a better understanding of how incredibly complex this issue is.  Judge for. yourself when it hits via Focus features in March.


I love, love love movies, watching them and discussing them...thus the birth of The Curvy Film Critic!!! Host/Producer/FilmCritic,Carla Renata is a member of such esteemed organizations as Critics Choice Association (Co-President Documentary Branch and Board Member), African American Film Critics Association and Online Association of Female Film Critics. My op-eds or features have been seen in Variety ,, The Wrap The Cherry Picks, as well as being a frequent Guest Contributor to Fox 11-LA, Good Day LA, ET Live!, Turner Classic Movies, The Cherry Picks, The Stream Team (Beond TV) ITV, Fox Soul's The Black Report, The ListTV and more. Catch my reviews on The Curvy Critic with Carla Renata - LIVE!!! Sundays 5pm PST via You Tube or Facebook Live. If you like what you read please shout me out and subscribe to The Curvy Critic on YouTube. You can chat with me across all social media platforms @TheCurvyCritic and as always, thanks for supporting a sista'

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