"Lake of Fire"

A month has passed since I read a startling review in The New York Times about a startling Tony Kaye film on abortion, called "Lake of Fire." Critics indicate that the film has great virtues, great flaws, but is relentlessly provocative. In an apparent effort to confound the cherished stereotypes of the Gray Lady's critics here, The Times' review (by Manohla Dargis) at one point states:

"If nothing else, the first abortion in the film (of a 20-week-old fetus, though that information is not in the film) reinforces what an abstraction the term pro-choice really is. Abortion does end the life of something. The fight, of course, is over what that something is an embryo, a baby, Gods creation, a blob of cells and who has dominion over it and the fully formed human being carrying that something inside her body."

I have seen a few other reviews, such as an Oct. 26 piece in the Boston Globe. And they all seem to follow the same sense of appreciation and discomfiture for all sides.

Yet "Lake of Fire" does not seem to have caught fire. I have seen little or no discussion about it, not appreciations or detractions from either pro-choicers or pro-lifers. I wonder why that is. Has anyone seen the film? Informed comments would be enlightening.

David Gibson is the director of Fordham’s Center on Religion & Culture.

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