“Voiceless” (ArtAffects)

Rusty Joiner and Jocelyn Cruz star in a scene from the movie "Voiceless." The Catholic News Service classification is A-III -- adults. (CNS/Icon Media Group)

By Catholic News Service

An overheated tone and characters’ questionable tactics in the struggle against abortion undercut the obviously good intentions behind this pro-life drama.

A Special Forces veteran (Rusty Joiner) who teaches boxing at an inner-city Philadelphia church’s outreach center is dismayed to find an abortion mill operating across the street. Previously uninvolved in the political controversy, but with a personal stake in the issue shared by his wife (Jocelyn Cruz), he works to get his fellow parishioners mobilized to shutter the place. He’s opposed by the pastor (James Russo) but supported by a neighbor (Susan Moses) whose husband helped found the church but who has ceased to worship there. Angry confrontations and an armed clash with fatal results ensue.

Viewers committed to the sanctity of innocent human life will sympathize with the frustration motivating writer-director Pat Necerato’s protagonist. Yet, just as the film centering on him seems unlikely to change the minds of the misguided, so too his approach to the moral horror of legal killing, while admirable for its fervor and persistence, lacks reflection and prayerfulness.

A scene of gun violence with slight gore, mature themes. The Catholic News Service classification is A-III — adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG-13 — parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13.

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