The 78th Venice Film Festival in Italy awarded its top prize to the pro-abortion French film Happening ( L’Événement), with the creative team proclaiming the movie to be “a tribute to those women who fought for the right to abortion.”
Happening took home the Golden Lion — one of international cinema’s most coveted awards — during Saturday’s ceremony that capped the 78th annual edition of the festival. The French-language movie had not been expected to take home the top prize despite strong reviews that praised its politics and artistry.
Set during the early 1960s, Happening tells the story of a female college student who discovers that she is pregnant but can’t get an abortion due to French laws at the time. The movie follows her increasing desperation as she seeks help from the hostile or indifferent people in her life, before eventually visiting an illegal abortionist.
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