She was silenced, but was far from being the only one. For all of them, the fear of destroying their existence outweighed the truth that was to be brought to light. Some of them did not take a stand for decades, trying to escape the Hollywood power structure, but it would not stop. Until they decided to speak up.
“She Said”, the new film by Maria Schrader is not only an important result of the #MeToo debate, but probably the most shocking product of the film industry itself. It’s hard to believe that just a few years after the incidents, a team would take on this project that cuts deeper into this construction and its ugliness than any other. Harvey Weinstein may have been just the tip of the iceberg; his predatory behavior and its consequences did not solve the problem, as women experience sexual assault every day both in the workplace and in private, but it is a step in the right direction.
Different events and sensations will go through every woman’s mind as soon as images once past come to their mind, to situations they have already had to go through. Unfortunately, I cannot exclude myself from this, which is why it is also damn difficult to watch this film without bias. One can immediately understand the fears and insecurities of the victims, but also the frustration about how the system was able to protect those responsible for years.
That’s why it’s even more important to show that even the biggest media construct in the world is nothing more than a collapsing house of cards when people join together and try to uncover the story and all its layers. Even if you have already studied the case and know the ways in which a corporation like Miramax tried to silence the victims and their accounts, you will still be spellbound and shocked by how much investigative work The New York Times and its journalists had to do to bring the abysses of the film industry to light.
If you can’t speak for yourself, speak for those who are going through the same thing. Or save those from it who may face such treatment in the future. As one character says so beautifully in the film, no girl (but of course I count boys as well) should ever experience abuse or bullying. After all, there are enough prominent male examples, including Brandon Fraser, who was blacklisted for years after disclosing that he had been sexually abused by an HFPA member and who struggled for a long time to find his way back into the industry.
So the question arises: how hard must it have been for those who were not so lucky? We know our unsightly society; know that history will always repeat itself. Therefore, this statement remains only wishful thinking. What we do have power over, however, is our voice, which we should use to silence the perpetrators. Our task is to believe it victims and above all to listen to them, because they definitely have something to say.