Let’s get the inevitable comparison out of the way; is She Said to Hollywood what 2015’s Spotlight is to the Catholic Church? Both films document painstaking journalistic investigations into abuse cover-ups, and take place within the offices of globally-renowned newspapers. So sure, there’re surface similarities. Maria Schrader’s film doesn’t always have the tense propulsion of Spotlight, but she and screenwriter Rebecca Lenkiewicz marshal a much broader story.

From its excellent prologue, She Said is a sensitive exploration of a range of women’s experiences, far beyond systemic sexual harassment and abuses of power. Carey Mulligan embodies Megan Twohey as a sharp and fiercely intelligent reporter yet, in a refreshing, taboo-breaking move, we also see her struggle with new motherhood. The film draws bold parallels between different types of culturally inherited trauma, and Weinstein’s crimes are superbly contextualised within related chapters of recent American history.

Mulligan and Zoe Kazan are a joy to watch as the central journos; there’s not an ounce of competitiveness between them, just a glowing depiction of mutual respect and emotional support. She Said excels at portraying its protagonists as human, integrating their personal lives with the ongoing investigation to cement the high stakes of #MeToo for all women and girls.

Though there’s almost too many threads to follow, there’s much to admire in the performances of whistle-blowing characters too. Jennifer Ehle and Samantha Morton both deliver stand-out scenes. The decision not to visually represent any sexual abuse proves a sound one. Instead Ehle, Angela Yeoh and Ashley Judd (as herself) give us layers of pain and emotional scarring through retellings alone. This is true even of voice-only performances from Keilly McQuail and Gwyneth Paltrow (also playing herself).

A triumphant portrayal of women’s experiences from a female-led creative team, and a clear-eyed, far-reaching look at the Weinstein investigation.



CAST: Carey Mulligan, Zoe Kazan, Patricia Clarkson, Andre Braugher, Jennifer Ehle, Angela Yeoh, Keilly McQuail, Ashley Judd, Gwyneth Paltrow, Samantha Morton

DIRECTOR: Maria Schrader

WRITERS: Rebecca Lenkiewicz, Jodi Kantor, Megan Twohey

SYNOPSIS: New York Times reporters Megan Twohey and Jodi Kantor break one of the most important stories in a generation – a story that helped ignite a movement and shattered decades of silence around the subject of sexual assault in Hollywood.