I can most definitely see why The Business of Being Born was on the “questions to ask ourselves” portion of the viewing list. Before viewing this film, whenever I would talk to my friends about giving birth, I would have never even given a home birth a second chance, but this film has opened my eyes to aspects of the argument that I was not aware of before.
I felt like the filmmaker’s storytelling approach was pretty successful. It was clear from the beginning of the film the argument and perspective that was going to be portrayed, and the rest of the film followed up on that argument. Perhaps in other documentaries a bit more of the risks of giving a home birth would have been explored to a greater capacity, but I felt like the level to which they brought up those risks in this film worked. This was not a film that was trying to show both sides of the issue unbiasedly, and there was nothing wrong with this lean towards home births, because that is what they were arguing straightforwardly from the start.
There were several effective tools that were used in this film. I think their strongest point was the fact that they got perspectives from all sorts of people involved in the issue. It would have been a much weaker documentary if the only people arguing for the use of midwives were the midwives themselves. The fact that they were able to get positive interview statements from midwives, women who had gone through the home birthing process, practicing doctors, as well as a celebrity really raised the influential factor up to the next level.
Overall, I felt it was a very enjoyable film while still making a persuasive argument. Like I mentioned before, it was extremely effective for me. Because I am the age and gender demographic that the film was most likely pandering towards, the fact that it made me think about something as monumental as birth in a different way really says something about the effectiveness of the film.