None of us would have seen a film like this coming a decade ago. Harvey Weinstein was obviously a giant in Hollywood and his downfall is one of the biggest scandals the industry has ever seen. I was happy to hear this film was on its way. It’s always a good thing to bring things like this into the light and I hope a decent amount of people will see this simply because of the importance of its content. I wouldn’t say this is one of 2022’s best but it is engaging and well performed.
The approach of the film is to focus solely on the New York Times investigative journalists who took charge of the Weinstein story. This approach has both its advantages and disadvantages. On the plus side, it feels very in-depth. We get to see the investigative process and we are told some of the stories of the victims. We also see just how depraved this man is and how far his reach was. Hearing the women tell their stories to the reporters and seeing the reporters deal with Harvey’s allies are the two most powerful aspects.
The negative is that it feels a bit small and limited because of that strict focus. Carey Mulligan and Zoe Kazan are both talented and do a fine job with their roles. Surprisingly, it was a different cast member that moved me the most. Jennifer Ehle shines the brightest in my view. She plays one of Harvey’s victims who was assaulted by him years in the past. Her performance is raw and organic.
Ashley Judd’s small cameo as herself is also pretty powerful. I’m glad they were able to get at least one of the actresses involved to play herself. Gwyneth Paltrow is talked about a lot but unlike Judd, she isn’t actually in the film. I think it would have been great if she would have played herself as well, but they find ways to work around it.
There is no actor that plays Harvey Weinstein. We only hear someone impersonate his voice as he speaks to the New York Times over the phone. I think it may have been a little bit more impactful if someone did play him and we actually got to see him. I realize that the decision not to do that was a part of the insular approach taken. I just think maybe a scene or two of someone portraying Weinstein would have added something.
I like the premise of having the main focus be on the reporters but if they would have opened that up just a tad, I think the film could have been even better. The ending packs quite a dramatic punch, in a positive way. There isn’t any melodrama added onto the finale that gives off a phony vibe. That was a wise choice and it made for an ending that was more meaningful.
She Said is a film that is worth a watch. This isn’t exactly a rave, but it does what it sets out to do in a quality manner.
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