Mom and Dad  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Mom and Dad is a feature-length 1945 film directed by William Beaudine, and largely produced by the exploitation filmmaker and presenter Kroger Babb. Mom and Dad is considered the most successful film within its genre. Although it faced numerous legal challenges, and was condemned by the National Legion of Decency, it went on to become the third highest grossing film of the 1940s.

Mom and Dad is regarded as an exploitation film; a term used to describe repackaged films with a controversial content, sometimes including medical footage, designed to establish an educational value that might circumvent U.S. censorship law.

Babb's marketing of his film incorporated old-style medicine show techniques, and used unique promotions to build an audience. In 2005, the film was added to the United States National Film Registry, in recognition of its numerous achievements.

Plot

Mom and Dad tells the story of June Carlson, a young girl who falls for the pilot Bob Lowell. After being sweet talked by Lowell, she "goes all the way" with him. The girl requests "hygiene books" from her mother Lois Austin, however Austin refuses because the girl is not yet married. The girl later learns from George Eldridge, her father, that the pilot has died in a crash. She tears up a letter she had been writing to him, and lowers her head as the film fades into intermission.

The intermission included a live lecture and bookselling within the theater. The film resumes at the point when the girl discovers that her clothes no longer fit, sending her into a state of despair. She takes advice from her teacher Hardie Albright, who was earlier fired for teaching sex education. Albright blames her mother for the problem, and accuses her of "neglect[ing] the sacred duty of telling their children the real truth." Only then is the girl able to confront her mother.

The film then presents reels and charts which include graphic images of the female anatomy, and footage of a live birth. In some screenings, a second film was shown along with Mom and Dad, and contained images portraying syphilis and venereal disease. Mom and Dad is believed to have had a number of endings, although most typically concluded with the birth of the girl's child, sometimes stillborn and other times put up for adoption.



Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Mom and Dad" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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