Directed by Nina Menkes
$12 / $8 Speed and Louisville Film Society members
“Nina Menkes’ eye-opening documentary will forever change how you look at films.”—Kate Erbland, IndieWire
In this astonishing documentary, celebrated independent filmmaker Nina Menkes explores the sexual politics of cinematic shot design. Using clips from hundreds of movies we all know and love – from Metropolis to Vertigo to Phantom Thread – Menkes convincingly makes the argument that shot design is gendered.
Brainwashed: Sex-Camera-Power illuminates the patriarchal narrative codes that hide within supposedly “classic” set-ups and camera angles and demonstrates how women are frequently displayed as objects for the use, support, and pleasure of male subjects. Building on the essential work of Laura Mulvey and other feminist writers, Menkes shows how these not-so-subtle embedded messages affect and intersect with the twin epidemics of sexual abuse and assault, as well as employment discrimination against women, especially in the film industry.
The film features interviews with an all-star cast of women and non-binary industry professionals including Julie Dash, Penelope Spheeris, Charlyne Yi, Joey Soloway, Catherine Hardwicke, Eliza Hittman, and Rosanna Arquette. The result is an electrifying call to action that will fundamentally alter the way you see, and watch, movies. A selection of the 2022 Sundance Film Festival. 2022, U.S., DCP, 107 minutes.