Right-to-die advocates will use a graphic “horror” movie to escalate their campaign on Thursday, hoping a short film depicting the agonising last days of a man dying from cancer will become an online sensation.
The move comes as the Victorian Parliament prepares for its euthanasia debate amid frantic lobbying of MPs by the pro and anti sides of the issue.
The five-minute film, Stop the Horror, has actors recreating the painful death of a Victorian man, 56-year-old Greg Sims, in 2005.
It is to be distributed on social media in an effort to engage younger voters in the debate, as the state’s MPs prepare to debate the controversial legislation.
But right-to-life campaigners, who are fighting the push to get assisted dying legislation onto Victoria’s statute books, dismissed the horror film tactic, saying it was a “dishonest” effort, aimed at “tricking people” into supporting legalised euthanasia.
Campaign group Go Gentle Australia, which produced Stop the Horror, says the short movie is too graphic for an under-18 audience and cannot be posted on open video sharing site YouTube.
A trailer for the film, which the producers regard as suitable for an under-18 audience, is designed to be widely shared on Facebook and other social media platforms, with would-be viewers required to declare themselves 18 or older before they can watch the full movie.
The film follows the final two weeks of Mr Sims’ life as he lies in a hospital bed, suffering excruciating pain and convulsions and graphically depicts the distress and trauma of his family as they watch him deteriorate.
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