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If These Walls Could Talk: A Movie Review

Updated on March 5, 2012

“If These Walls Could Talk” is a three part miniseries that tackles the controversial issue of abortion. The setting is on a suburban house and its three occupants—a nurse from the 1950s, a mother from the 1970s and a 1990s student. All three women are facing the same dilemma of an unwanted pregnancy. These happened during the time wherein women’s right advocacy in the US is at the forefront of political and ethical issues.



In the 1952 setting, Claire Donnelly is a nurse who was widowed by a soldier. She became pregnant with a child fathered by her brother-in-law. In desperation, she opted to have an abortion to spare her husband’s family of any humiliation and to preserve her good relationship with them. In the end, she was able to terminate her pregnancy but it cost her her life.

In the 1974 setting, Barbara Barrows is faced with the predicament of caring for another child. She is already an aging mother of four with a husband who works as a policeman. She has to juggle her role as a mother, a college student and a wife. With the encouragement of her teenage daughter, she contemplated on having an abortion. But in the end, she still decided to keep her child.

In the 1996 setting, Christine Cullen is a college student who had an affair with her married professor. She posed too much complication so the professor broke up with her and offer her money in return. With this predicament, Cullen decided to have an abortion with the help of Dr. Beth Thompson. However during the time of the procedure, a violent protest is also brewing. A protester managed to walk in on the operation room and shot Dr. Thompson.


The movie “If These Walls Could Talk” does not only tackle the dilemma of women with unwanted pregnancy and social pressure, but also the morality of abortion. It tries to put the concept in various scenarios so the viewers could empathize with the characters and somehow elicit validation that abortion is acceptable. Or it could be acceptable depending on the circumstances.

But when does abortion becomes justified? Is a fetus only becomes a human being when the mother takes it home?

On my opinion, abortion can never be justified. First, in the case of Claire Donnelly and Christine Cullen, it was their own promiscuous ways that brought them to their predicament. If their morals have told them not to sleep with a brother-in-law or a married professor, they wouldn’t be on that difficult position. Since it is already their reality, abortion is not the only solution. Adoption is another option that is mostly taken for granted. If a woman does not want to have a child, a lot of couple would be interested in adopting their baby. That’s why societies have adoption agencies to accommodate the children whose mothers think that they cannot care for their babies. Second, as in the case of Barbara Barrows, adoption could also be an option. But to prevent having unplanned pregnancy on couples is it not why we have developed family planning and various contraceptive methods?

Abortion could and should never be acceptable as to whatever circumstances it may be. Be it a life and death situation between a mother and her baby, or a forthcoming career that having a baby might mean a distraction and liability. A child has the right to live. And babies cannot exercise that right if the responsible members of the society will not uphold it for them. In today’s society where abortion is rampant and “tolerant” on the matter, it is taking root with moral rationalization in terms of population boom, effects on economy and its legitimization on some countries.

In the end, the question that we should all ponder upon is this: Why would an innocent baby suffer the consequences of the deeds of its mother? It is not the baby’s wrong doing that it ended up in the belly of its mother. I stand firm in upholding the rights of a child, its right to live.


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    • LoisRyan13903 profile image

      Lois Ryan 4 years ago from Upstate NY originally from Long Island

      You did a good job with the summaries during the summaries. The analysis started out fine but then the hub turned into a propaganda for pro-life. While this is a very good hub, you can add more to it by showing the pro-choice argument. Yes agree with you on pro-life

    • LoisRyan13903 profile image

      Lois Ryan 4 years ago from Upstate NY originally from Long Island

      You can catch it in clips on However, in the 1952 and 1974 hubs the first parts were deleted due to copyright issues. Great hubs but the females are not always at fault, the brother-in-law and professor should have used protection and the husband should have had an operation.

    • lee custodio profile image

      lee custodio 5 years ago

      It came out 1996 on HBO. I was not able to catch it on HBO when they released it, it was recommended by a friend a few months back. It touches a very sensitive topic and it took me a while to actually publish this hub.

    • LauraGSpeaks profile image

      LauraGSpeaks 5 years ago from Raleigh, NC

      Good hub. When did this movie come out? Your hub encourages me to see it. Our country is founded on the principle of preserving life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness for all. I do not understand why our country allows innocent lives to be taken for sake of convenience.