Women Talking

Women Talking ★★★

have been mulling this over for a few hours and i'm feeling conflicted about it, because A) if you remove this from being within the context of a true story that ended completely differently, it feels like a theatrical representation of much larger conversations about what it means to question your existence within an abusive power structure, or B) if you treat it as a cinematic representation of real events, it's completely baffling that women in this specific community would have the language to have these philosophical debates (like there's literally a line about how they never spoke about their bodies and so when they were violated they had no language to describe it and therefore it became a secret). so while yes i feel as the former it serves as this beautiful moral microcosm of greater existential arguments (and the way sarah polley constructs it is very moving and deliberate), i feel sort of robbed of a more complicated resolution simply because i know how this story really ended. which is not to say i want this film to conclude with something bleak and lacking in hope, but there is something troubling to me about how the lives of the women represented in this film are repurposed into a parable.

(my other gripe is like....literally a line in this is "not all men" and it's treated totally seriously, and i was like, why is this well-worn phrase even in this movie?? it's moments like these that make me just further irritated by how easy this film seems. maybe this would have worked better for me as a play for completely superficial reasons about the "reality" hinted at by cinema as a medium, blah blah blah, just my feeling. but anyway. i do feel like i got my money's worth, like, the women did talk!)

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