Within the theme of International Women’s day 2017 – Be Bold For Change we’re showing ‘Vessel’ in the Community Doco screening
Sunday, March 12th will be the next monthly community documentary screening in the Old Cobargo Butter Factory at 3.30pm
A multi-national documentary film written and directed by Diana Whitten
Rebecca Gomperts is a Dutch doctor who pushes the limits of abortion law. Her method: to provide abortions on a ship in offshore waters.
An unabashed work of advocacy, the documentary – which includes snippets from as early as 2000 – follows Dr. Gomperts to several countries. While the statistics and arguments about the need for legal abortion are unlikely to strike viewers as new, the film vividly illustrates the precariousness of access.
Her project, Women on Waves, begins as flawed spectacle, a media frenzy, faced with governmental, religious, and military blockades. In a sequence from 2004, as the Women on Waves vessel nears Portuguese waters, it is met by two warships. Dr. Gomperts goes on Portuguese television and reveals the pharmaceutical method by which women might on their own induce abortion, information the film illustrates in detailed animation. (Abortion later became legal in Portugal.)
‘Vessel’ becomes a film not just about abortion but also about activism. It raises provocative questions about the power of laws to police information in an increasingly globalised world.