To the surprise (and consternation) of Hollywood, Unplanned opened to more than $6 million in box office receipts, finishing No. 5 in the nation. And it did this while opening in less than 1,100 theaters nationwide.
More importantly, this powerful, pro-life movie that exposes the evil of Planned Parenthood and the abortion industry is making a powerful impact on its viewers. This could truly be a major game-changer in the days ahead.
Not that the left didn't try hard to stop the film from getting out of the gate, let alone succeeding.
Lead actress Ashley Bratcher was warned that she was "probably gonna be blacklisted" by Hollywood if she took the role.
The Hollywood Reporter notes that "Lifetime, Hallmark Channel, HGTV and several other cable networks" rejected advertising for the movie.
I've heard of theaters that dropped the movie before its release, only to reinstate it after protests.
Then there was the ridiculous R-rating the movie was saddled with, without possible justification.
And over the weekend, Twitter temporarily suspended the movie's account, only to restore it a few hours later after a storm of protests. (Can anyone tell me any possible rationale, other than sheer, anti-life bigotry, for shutting down this account?) Then, once the account was restored, more than 100,000 followers realized they were no longer listed on the account. This is beyond suspicious.
It's also quite revealing that, on Rotten Tomatoes, critics (15 so far) have given Unplanned a rating of 53, while viewers (1,996 at present) have given it a score of 94. Right now, that makes Unplanned the highest viewer-rated movie of all new releases, way ahead of Dumbo and Captain Marvel, both of which have viewer ratings of 60. It's even doing better than How to Train Your Dragon, at 88.
But these ratings only tell you so much. It's the testimonies of the viewers which are so powerful.
One man posted this on my Facebook page: "I had tears throughout the movie. Got to my car and really broke down. Thank you God that you are allowing people to see your side of this issue."
A woman wrote: "I cried through so much of this movie. I don't understand how people can continue to justify the killing of the unborn. I walked out of this movie with the conviction to get involved in crisis pregnancy assistance ASAP."
Another said this: "I couldn't stop crying and at one point wanted to wail and pray. I had to force myself to get it together."
And another: "Within the first ten minutes I was sobbing as was the lady sitting beside me. I know what happens with an abortion but seeing it was powerful. If I weren't already pro-life I would be after watching this movie."
A mother posted this: "I took my 16 year old and she was greatly impacted. She had no strong opinion on abortion until she saw this movie. I'm taking my 11 year old to see it next."
And one viewer commented, "I was overcome by the strong message of grace and forgiveness."
One viewer after another described the powerful impact of Unplanned, with many feeling the need to get involved in the pro-life movement now.
But the comment that moved me most was this one, from another mother who went with her daughter. Her own story is compelling as well. Read this and weep:
"Wow what a movie! I went to see it with my 11yrs old daughter Bella. I was reluctant at first to take her, I prayed about it and got the green light from The Holy Spirit. Yet there were scenes where she covered her eyes, she was glad she saw it too. At the end she hugged me so tight, started crying uncontrollably and said 'So much evil mommy, those poor babies. Everyone needs to see this movie.'
"She is also one of those babies who got saved by prayer. I was one of those women who had an appointment to murder my baby when I was 12 weeks with her, but cancel the appointment hours prior doing 'the procedure' at a clinic here in Houston..."
May God have mercy on our nation. May He turn the tide in our country. May He act on behalf of more than 60 million slain in the womb.
And so we pray, "So much evil, Lord! These poor babies! Help us to do our part to awaken the conscience of the nation. We beseech You, Father, to change hearts and minds. It's time!"
Dr. Michael Brown (www.askdrbrown.org) is the host of the nationally syndicated Line of Fire radio program. His latest book is Revival Or We Die: A Great Awakening Is Our Only Hope. Connect with him on Facebook or Twitter, or YouTube.
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