Provincial France in the mid-1970s, a place where people rise early, crochet accessories adorn windows and brown and orange are the dominant colours. Women have only recently been granted the right to open a bank account without their husband’s consent. Annie works in a mattress factory and has two children with her husband Philippe. She works tirelessly to organise family life: she’s always on the go, and the camera follows her everywhere. When she accidentally becomes pregnant, Annie comes into contact with MLAC, an underground movement that campaigns for free abortion and contraception. The movement has enabled women in France to have safe, illegal abortions and access to birth control since 1973. Annie has an abortion at one of the local branches—professionally and in an atmosphere of sisterhood such as she has never experienced before. Annie’s body suddenly becomes a political issue and her feminist transformation begins. Through Annie’s gaze, the right to choose becomes the sine qua non of gender equality. Blandine Lenoir elegantly weaves into the narrative documentary footage of prominent campaigners such as Delphine Seyrig and Simone Veil. Although anger is part of the film’s title, it’s Annie’s cheerfulness that makes the immense injustice so blatant. Lenoir continues to tell the story of the struggle for the right to abortion. When Annie says »My abortion was more beautiful than the birth of my children«, this is about nothing less than the utopia of an anti-patriarchal, supportive society.
In cooperation with Gleichstellungsbüro der Stadt Dortmund.
Guest on 21.4.: Maria Hendel, Pro Choice Münster
Born in France in 1973, Blandine Lenoir, began her career as an actor aged 15, appearing in Gaspar Noé’s film Carne (1991). She studied literature before turning her hand to screenwriting alongside performing at the age of 25, and then she switched to directing. After eight award-winning short films, her medium-length film Monsieur l’abbé was nominated for a César in 2011. As a director, Lenoir places herself at the service of her actors and their emotions. In her feature films, both comedies and dramas, she addresses generational conflicts and feminist solidarity—most recently in her acclaimed comedy Madame Aurora and the Scent of Spring.
Films by Blandine Lenoir
Aurore 2017 | L’Amérique de la femme 2015 | Zouzou 2015 | Monsieur l’abbé 2010 | Ma culotte 2006 | Pour de vrai 2006 | Rosa 2005 | Dans tes rêves 2004 | Avec Marinette 2000