8/10 Nominated for Best Documentary at the Academy Awards, “Writing with Fire” showcases a group of Dalit women who are the only women to run their own newspaper in India. The media in India is dominated by men as women are generally seen as second class citizens. This small but brave group of women decided to start their own newspaper and despite everyone assuming they would fail, their following has only grown. While many Westerners falsely claim that places like America have a rape culture (it doesn’t), India actually does. Rape is extremely common and accusations of rape are rarely taken seriously. This film shows citizens going to the police for help and the corrupt police don’t even care enough to file the proper paperwork. It is a sad reality for many Indian women who are victims of these horrible crimes as they constantly live in fear. The Dalit women in this film are extremely brave as they risk rubbing many high up officials and politicians the wrong way just by covering the news in a fair and balanced way. This documentary is eye opening, entertaining, informative and highlights a positive story with real progress being made, which was refreshing and encouraging to see. At only an hour and a half, the pacing is excellent as this is a relatively quick watch. The interviews are fascinating, the B-roll footage is strong and as several of the women learn about filming with their cell phones, the audience learns right alongside them. Directors Sushmit Ghosh and Rintu Thomas wisely pick a few women out of the group to focus on and while they are in the same profession and have many similarities, they also have struggles unique to them. One single woman feels pressured to get married so there is no shame brought to her family name. Another woman gets criticized for having a job that keeps her out late at night. Finally, a woman struggles to make the switch from a physical newspaper to online social media as learning the ins and outs of a cell phone prove difficult for her. The film brings true perspective to many privileged, Western women who have cozy lives but love to complain on social media. In the face of true danger and rape culture, in a country dominated by men, the story of these incredible women putting their fears aside to get the truth out to the masses is an inspiring story worth checking out.

#GetYourNewsInACurry / #MomShell / #Anchorwoman2TheLegendContinues / #MeeraMeeraOnTheCall / #BroadNews / #TheNewsWomb

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