She Said

The emotional (it not perfect) biopic about how The New York Times exposed this horrible monster.

What Harvey Weinstein did to a number of women is so disgusting that he deserves the 23-year prison sentence. This producer of a number of our favorite movies (“Pulp Fiction,” “Scream,” “Sin City,” etc.) has sexually harassed actresses like Ashley Judd and Gwyneth Paltrow, and even raped Rose McGowan, among others-some who remain nameless. The problem was if they said something sooner, he would make sure they wouldn’t get the best movie roles again or he would financially destroy their lives. Lawsuits and all.

After word got out, the #MeToo movement began, and most women have been coming forward about being victims. “Most,” because some can’t talk. It’s impossible for me to imagine their pain, but I do support them.

“She Said” is about how the New York Times helped expose Weinstein’s crimes, thanks to the journalists Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey. And while it’s not as deep as Spotlight,” which was about how Catholic priests violated boys, it still leaves you depressed for the victims and rooting for the journalists to get their stories straight.

Carey Mulligan plays Twohey, while Zoe Kazan plays Kantor. They both struggle to find the women to speak what Weinstein did to them. They are lucky enough to speak with Ashley Judd, who appears as herself to express her sorrow of how he nearly destroyed her life and movie career.

There’s also one of Weinstein’s former employees named Zelda Perkins (Samantha Morton), who gives Kantor a monologue about the horrors she’s experienced; along with a mother named Laura Madden (Jennifer Ehle), who comes forward, after her nightmare in Ireland, 1992. These performances are real and provocative.

“She Said” was directed by Maria Schrader, a German filmmaker, who also made last year’s “I’m Your Man.” In her American feature debut, she allows the actresses to express their depressions and determinations, depending on who plays who. Mulligan and Kazan are able to adapt to their real-life characters, but bigger praise goes to Morton, Ehle, and Judd for their powerful emotions and outspoken dialogue.

Mulligan was also the hero of “Promising Young Woman,” in which she played a woman getting her revenge on rapists and male chauvinist pigs in her own charismatic ways. In this movie, there’s even a scene when Twohey tells off a guy trying to hit on her in a bar during a meeting. She explodes there. Outside that scene, she’s able to focus more on getting the story to the public. Easier said than done.

As I’ve mentioned, “She Said” doesn’t compare to the humanity and tears of “Spotlight” in terms of its screenplay (by Rebecca Lenkiewicz), but it does keep you involved and has you feeling horrible for the victims. Seeing Marilyn Monroe being raped in “Blonde” is sickening beyond words, and left me asking: “Where’s Carey Mulligan when you need her?” She’s over here playing a journalist trying to get the Harvey Weinstein story about there.

Take my advice, seeing The New York Times exposing this movie mogul’s evil to the world is more entertaining than how Ana De Armas played Norma Jean. Plus, this movie is shorter than that by about a half hour. We only hear the producer trying to talk his way into seducing his victims, which is almost as disgusting. I hope he gets what’s coming to him.

Rating: 3 out of 4.

Categories: Biography, Drama

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