“But as long as he is on the plane, I will not comply.”
A woman stubbornly refuses to sit in her seat, causing the flight to be delayed. She’s arguing with the flight attendants. She’s demanding this particular man be put off the plane immediately. Passengers on the plane look back to see what the commotion is about. There’s a range of reactions.
One person looks back for a few seconds, then turns back around, puts on his headphones, and goes to sleep. Another group of people watches intently, worried about what may happen, while a guy in front of them sneakily records the whole instance on his phone. These two men call for the flight attendant and complain about the flight being delayed because of this woman causing a scene, and request that they be taken to the first class to get to their business meeting on time (to that, the flight attendant says no, and offers them a complimentary sandwich instead).
The head pilot proposes to remove the woman off the plane entirely to keep things moving. The co-pilot worries that that action may be seen as a “pro deportation statement.”
At this point in the film, we still don’t know exactly what’s happening. At first, it seems like a cranky woman possibly being prejudiced by not wanting to sit next to someone. We soon find out the real reason for the ruckus; this woman is advocating for a political refugee about to be deported.
THE AFFECTED Faces Morality Before Flying Coach
“Everybody wants to do something, yet nobody does anything. But she just did it.”
Being challenged on his political stance was definitely not on the pilot’s commercial pilot certificate. However, these hard situations are necessary if we want to do what’s right. Rikke Gregersen, through the Norwegian production company Them Girls Film, presents varying points of view to an unprecedented problem at an inconvenient time.
Throughout the whole 13 minute film, we never see the woman’s face or the refugee’s face. The only faces we see are the flight attendants, the pilots, and the various people on the plane as witnesses.
The Affected will likely make you wonder, as it did this reviewer, what you would do in that situation. Will you be brave like the unseen woman and stand up for what is right, no matter who’s uncomfortable? Or will you sit idly by as injustice ensues?
If you like short but strong political statements, The Affected will be interesting to you. If political or moral statements in films are of no interest to you, then you can skip this.
Anders T. Andersen
Alexander De Senger
Director: Rikke Gregersen
Producer: Stine Blichfeldt
Writers: Rikke Gregersen and Trond Arntzen
Cinematographer: Torjus Thesen
Editor: Espen Skjong Knutsen
Find out more about the film on the Them Girls Film website
Images courtesy of THE AFFECTED
About the Author: Breanna Henry
Almost 10 years ago Breanna sat in her tiny room she shared with her younger sister in Houston, Texas writing songs, stories, and poems on the rough carpet. She mimicked songs she heard on the radio and imitated books she's read from the Scholastic Book Fair. By fifth grade, she knew creative writing would soon be her passion. Now a sophomore at Loyola University New Orleans, she has published works on her university's newspaper, literary journal, and on her own blog. When she's not writing and working towards her Mass Communication and English Writing degree, she's watching Criminal Minds re-runs, doing photoshoots with friends, and dancing wildly in her dorm room while music blasts through her speakers.