The Weinstein affair brought to the screen

An ode to investigative journalism and the victims of Harvey Weinstein: She Said, Wednesday in theaters, recounts the long investigation that sparked the #MeToo movement.

On screen in She Saidactress and feminist activist Ashley Judd, one of the first to have denounced the sexual harassment that Harvey Weinstein had subjected her to, plays her own role: that of an actress who refused the sexual advances of the producer and paid the price, before resolving years later to speak openly.

“It’s so important to be in our truth and to have a moral right to our own history that I had no trouble doing it,” said the actress in October in New York, before pay tribute to his “sisters” – other Weinstein victims – who were also present at the screening.

On October 5, 2017, when Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey’s article was published by the New York Timesafter months of work, he will bring about the downfall of the untouchable Hollywood producer and the #MeToo wave of liberation of women’s speech on sexual violence or sexism, well beyond cinema.

Already sentenced to 23 years in prison for rape and sexual assault in 2020 in New York, the former influential film producer is currently retried in Los Angeles.

Tribute to journalists

But She Said, written by German actress and filmmaker Maria Schrader and adapted from the eponymous book by the two Pulitzer-prize-winning journalists, pays little attention to the repercussions of their investigation. Like the great investigative films of American cinema, the film is above all a tribute to the patient and tenacious work of investigative journalists.

We necessarily think of All the President’s Men (Alan J. Pakula, 1976), on the Watergate scandal, or at spotlight (Tom McCarthy, 2015), which had put the spotlight on the Boston Globe’s investigation into pedocrime in the Catholic Church.

Almost half a century after the duo of washington post Played on screen by Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman, they are two women, seasoned journalists and young mothers, who make the powerful tremble, with the help of a shadowy but crucial editor, Rebecca Corbett, and the support unwavering support from their editor, Dean Baquet.

The duo is played by Zoe Kazan, who plays Jodi Kantor, while the role of Megan Twohey is given to Carey Mulligan, the heroine of the post-#MeToo black comedy Promising Young Woman (Emerald Fennell, 2020).

Duels and persuasion

“One of the reasons we are so honored by this film is that it truly embodies our beliefs in journalism,” Jodi Kantor told New York. “We’ve been journalists for a long time, but the Weinstein case kind of underlines everything we believe in and puts exclamation marks on it,” she added.

The film highlights the complementarity of the two characters: at the first, the work of persuasion and empathy to make testify the victims, actresses or employees of Miramax – the production and distribution company of the brothers Bob and Harvey Weinstein -, at the other the duels against the lieutenants of the producer.

With a sober direction and writing, and the serious music of Nicholas Britell, She Said increases in intensity until the final face-to-face between the New York Times and Harvey Weinstein and his lawyers, at the time of the article’s publication.

Six years after the start of the affair, the director, Maria Schrader, “hopes that the film will once again relaunch discussions” by “asking the same question: ‘Where are we today, and what happened? happened during the last five years? »».

She Said, by Maria Schrader. Out Wednesday.

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The Weinstein affair brought to the screen