Boulder Weekly 5.12.2022

Page 22

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The Natural Funeral transforms first Coloradoans into compost soil. On March 20th, 2022, Seth and Chris of The Natural Funeral returned the first transformed human remains to the Colorado earth at a historic ceremony at The Colorado Burial Preserve in Florence, CO. (TNF’s Seth and Chris with Chrysalis composting vessels.) Call or email Karen, or chat with any of our staff about Body Composting or our other green and holistic services: Water cremation (eco cremation) Green burial and Reverent Body Care® (an honoring of the physical body using pure essential oils). Flame cremation is also available. Contact Karen van Vuuren or any of our staff to find out how to minimize your final footprint.

720-515-2344 Live and Die Your Values 22


MAY 12, 2022

Past tense, present tension in ‘Happening’

by Michael J. Casey


rance, 1963. Three young women enter the club. ON THE BILL: Inside, they’re having a party, dancing to the music. Happening opens The Cokes are in the icebox; rock ’n’ roll on the in wide release on radio. The place is packed with students, the current May 13. occupation of the three women who lead us in. They are Anne (Anamaria Vartolomei), Hélène (Luàna Bajrami) and Brigette (Louise Orry-Diquéro). They are close, but slowly the camera separates Anne from the trio and settles on her. She is the focus of Happening’s misfortune, and that misfortune is that Anne is pregnant. Strike that: Anne’s misfortune is not that she is pregnant, but that she isn’t ready to be a mother, and abortion won’t be legal in France for another 12 years. In 1963, no one even wants to speak the word. They know if Anne is caught trying to get one, she’ll be sent to prison. They also fear—and not without valid concern—that they, too, will be locked up for assisting in such things. Even suggesting a name to ask for or a number to call scares them. As one doctor, one of the more understanding characters in the story, bluntly puts it: Anne has no choice in the matter. Adapting Annie Ernaux’s 2000 memoir, writer/director Audrey Diwan brings Happening to the big screen when the debate over a woman’s right to choose has hit a new low. Happening depict the labyrinthine realities and horrifying possibilities of a woman seeking to terminate a pregnancy—be it self-induced or in back allies—in the absence of state-sanctioned health care. Prohibition laws seldom change behavior; they just make it easier for bad actors to impose their morality. Vartolomei excels as Anne. The movie rests almost entirely on her shoulders and all the words she doesn’t say. Once she learns of her pregnancy, she closes herself off to her friends and her mother (Sandrine Bonnaire) as she searches for a solution. Only day, but not instead of a life. I could hate the kid for it. I may never be able to love it.” She just wants agency, after all. Agency over her hopes and dreams, agency over her desires and urges, agency over her own body. Instead, she gets none. Diwan and cinematographer Laurent Tangy relentlessly pursue Anne as she searches for a way out. Even the frame around Anne, 1:37 Mouglalis) who can perform the abortion, Diwan and Tangy refuse to turn the camera away or cut. If Anne must undertake this, then so shall we. It seems only fair. The story of Happening is what happens in secret when the right to choose is eliminated. The how of Happening is that none of this should be secret. Email questions or comments to l