Is anyone else excited for this? It's adapted from a novel loosely based on a real life case you might remember - a Mennonite community where men raped more than 130 women and little girls between 2005-2009 by anesthetizing them with a sedative. When they would wake up bloody and in pain, they would be told Satan had done it or they were hallucinating. It was obviously an enormous effort for these women to gather, exchange stories, and advocate for themselves in a fundamentalist community.
I think the timing is fantastic. A film dealing honestly with rape is always welcome if it's well done, but this offers 3 messages I think are especially needed right now:
1 - The same men we know, love, and see every day are capable of placing male privilege over our comfort. These guys told their own wives and daughters it was all their imagination, even when they were physically injured, had STIs or became pregnant, rather than go against men in their community.
2 - Religious men are not "protectors." I think this is critical to remember in our current genderized climate, when so many women think, "Well, at least the Right knows what a women is." Fundamentalist men aren't old-fashioned protectors offering women a life of comfort and shelter if she's willing to trade some freedoms. Rape, abuse, financial control, infidelity, are every bit as in play as with gender bros.
3 - Feminism saves the day. The heart of feminism is women talking to each other, telling the truth, and supporting each other. That's where everything starts. These women started meeting in haylofts. They were illiterate, had no maps or knowledge of the outside world, and most spoke only a German dialect used by Mennonites. And they were able to rise against their elders and imprison 8 rapists.
It's directed by Sarah Polley and stars Frances McDormand, Rooney Mara, Jessie Buckley, and some other names. It comes out in Oscar season (late Nov/early Dec), so it should get some good press.
I'm hoping this inspires women to feel they can fight back by organizing together.