Sweet young lass Patty Smith moves from her native Kansas to Los Angeles, California. Everything is going smoothly for Patty until one fateful night in which she gets raped by a trio of ...
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Sweet young lass Patty Smith moves from her native Kansas to Los Angeles, California. Everything is going smoothly for Patty until one fateful night in which she gets raped by a trio of thugs on the beach. After her doctor informs her that she's pregnant, Patty decides to get an abortion. But since abortions are illegal, poor Patty must resort to drastic illicit measures in order to obtain one. Written by
The title of the print I saw read "The Shame of Patty Smith". This picture is quite remarkable. Done in low-key noir style, with narration at critical points, it plunges ahead fearlessly pointing out the negatives of illegal abortion through a combination of drama and occasional conversation geared to reveal certain unpleasant realities without being too obvious or bombastic. The picture takes the side of legalizing abortion and builds a persuasive case for it.
Patty Smith is the name of the character who wants an abortion after having been raped by 3 hoodlums. She's played by Dani Lynn, who had a brief career. Her roommate is the better known Merry Anders. Bruno VeSota is a sleazy bar owner. Patty's regular doctor, who could not perform an abortion legally, is played by J. Edward McKinley who did quite a lot of television work.
The story and screenplay are realistic and honest, not sugarcoating the issues at all. They avoid overdoing the melodramatic in favor of a matter-of-fact approach that nevertheless brings out the emotional elements faced by a young girl who is forced off the beaten path into a back alley world after consulting her doctor and a priest. The film definitely plays like and looks like an extension of noir into the early 60s. This is a serious movie, not exploitation.
I've never seen anything from this time period that honed in on abortion until seeing this. It's a rather unknown movie, not appearing on the Wiki list of films about abortion. In all probability, this film is bold and path-breaking.
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