She Said

Universal

The New York Times' bombshell exposé about Harvey Weinstein's sexual misconduct was a watershed moment for Hollywood back in October 2017.

She Said, directed by Maria Schrader, tells the story of the journalists behind the investigation - Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey, played by Zoe Kazan and Carey Mulligan, respectively. It follows them as they chase down leads and try to find hard evidence and named sources to back up their allegations.

As Weinstein was a Hollywood heavyweight with the ability to blacklist people in the industry, many women felt afraid to speak out and risk the repercussions, and so, this feature honours the brave women who came forward and went on the record to bring the producer down.

Some people have argued that this film has come out too soon, and they might be right. As important, poignant, and fascinating as this movie is, it would have been far more impactful in, say, 10 years' time when people's memory of the story coming out was less vivid.

Even still, She Said is a very strong entry into the investigative journalism sub-genre. It is deeply interesting and moving watching Kantor and Twohey working the case and speaking with the survivors. It is a gargantuan task - they come up against many dead ends, people unwilling to speak and sabotage from Weinstein's team - and they keep pushing ahead, knowing that the breakthrough will come.

At times, they wonder if their months of hard work will all be for nothing - little did they know about the cultural shift their piece would spark and that Weinstein would end up in prison. They also won a Pulitzer Prize for their reporting.

Viewers will be pleased to know that Weinstein - who is portrayed by Mike Houston - does not have much screentime here and you never ever see his face. Also, we just hear the survivors tell their stories - the scenes of sexual assault or harassment are never shown.

One of the most poignant aspects of She Said is Ashley Judd, an actress who went on the record in that piece. Judd plays herself telling the journalists her story in two short but emotional scenes. What a brave woman she is for reliving that for a movie.

Mulligan excels as the no-nonsense Twohey, but Kazan is the heart of the movie. Kantor started working on the investigation first and she cares about the story deeply. There is an emotional, pivotal moment where she might bring viewers to tears. They are supported by Patricia Clarkson and Andre Braugher as their editors and Jennifer Ehle as accuser Laura Madden.

She Said, which could have done with a tighter pace, is an eye-opening journalism movie that highlights the tenacity of Kantor and Twohey and the bravery of the women who agreed to be named in the exposé.

In cinemas from Friday 28th November.