I don't usually review movies, since they generally do not have anything to do with content of the God and Science website. However, the site does have a fair amount of material concerning the abortion debate, cloning, and stem cell research. When browsing the Internet, prolife reviews of Bella were quite positive, although for the most part, secular critics didn't seem to like it. Since the movie was not playing in my area, I determined I would wait until it appeared on DVD. However, the movie started doing well at the box office and finally came to a theatre near me, so I decided to go, and I am glad I did.
I was frankly expecting some kind of preachy prolife production, so the movie was quite a surprise to me. First of all, the abortion issue, although ever present, never dominates the story line. Above all, the movie is about friendship and caring for another person in need. The characters were wonderfully developed, and the actors and script are first rate. As the movie proceeds you become fully part of the main actor's family. The pregnant woman gives the standard pro-choice responses to why she can't have a baby, and we understand why she has made the decision she has. The movie provides a heart-felt story and is well worth the time and money to go see - even if you are pro-choice.
Partial spoiler ahead. If you intend to see the movie, go back now! - You will enjoy the movie more the less you know.
If you still aren't sure you want to see the movie, continue reading. Nina is late again to the restaurant (due to morning sickness) and is fired by the owner as she arrives to work. Jose, the chief chef (and the owner's brother) walks out to talk to her and ends up spending the day with her, much to the dismay of his his brother and family. Jose really cares for people and gets involved in their lives, so his reaction is one that is consistent with his character. However, he is no saint and has his own checkered past, which more than anything else has shaped his outlook and concern for others. He comes from a loving, close-knit family that shares in each others' happiness and failures. In contrast, Nina is the only child of a basically single-parent family. She has been on her own for many years and just wants a friend to go with her to the abortion clinic for moral support. As the story develops, we feel that we get to know the characters personally, and cry and laugh with them. The storyline is not completely predictable, and even a "non-emotional" scientist was driven to tears in parts. So, go see the movie. It's even worth driving a few extra miles to find a theatre.
Last updated November 27, 2007