Back to IndieWire

‘Full Frontal with Samantha Bee’ Goes Deep Inside The Weirdest Anti-Abortion Art Film Ever Made

'Full Frontal with Samantha Bee' Goes Deep Inside The Weirdest Anti-Abortion Art Film Ever Made

In the recent episode of “Full Frontal With Samantha Bee,” the host took a look at the anti-abortion history and the birth of the religious right. Bee analyzed how the power-hungry leaders manufactured and legitimized the abortion issue with the help of the propaganda videos, “Whatever Happened to the Human Race?,” created by Frank Schaeffer. 

“Many people think the new religious right arose as a response to the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision,” Bee said in a parody video. “But that’s not true,” she added, going on to explain how the Dartmouth religion professor Randall Balmer revealed how leaders of the religious right held a conference call in 1979 to discuss which issues they should politicize, choosing abortion as the topic. 

READ MORE: Dawn Porter’s ‘Trapped’ (On Trials of Abortion Clinics in the Deep South) Premieres at Sundance

The host showed clips of the anti-abortion videos created by Schaeffer which featured creepy scenes of three people in white writing on the wall, a person in a sea of dead baby dolls, a manufacturing factory where baby dolls are thrown away and a laboratory where there is a real baby in a cage. 

Speaking with the filmmaker of “Whatever Happened To the Human Race?” he stated that those videos, became the “single greatest regret of my life.”

“We got middle class, white America and lower, middle class America, working class America to vote against their own economic interests by getting them very pissed off on a whole series of social issues that leaders in Washington never actually wanted to do anything about,” said Schaeffer. “But they manipulated them.”  Adding, “Abortion is just one of those issues but that was the match that lit the entire fire.”

READ MORE: Sundance-Winning Abortion Doc ‘Trapped’ Finds Distribution Ahead of Landmark Case

When speaking about the lives of others, videos can certainly be influential. Watch his interview below where he explains how anti-abortion was legitimized and his regret for the films. See clips of Schaeffer’s films in the video above. 

Stay on top of the latest breaking film and TV news! Sign up for our Festivals newsletter here.

This Article is related to: News and tagged ,