Am I a wife, am I for sale? Or am I a girl?

“Impossible odds, unstoppable girls”

I watched the movie Girls Rising together with my international English class. This movie came out the 7th of March 2013 and was directed by Academy Award-nominated director Richard E. Robbins. Produced by former ABC journalists of The Documentary group and Paul G. Allen’s Vulcan Productions.1

Shortly summed up, the story is about nine girls from around the world, throughout the movie we learn their stories and struggles. Every one of them are going through different journeys and it’s vital for the girls to receive an education and achieve their dreams. They are all true stories, and all the girls were cooperating with an author from their country to write their story. For the girl’s safety, the stories were played out by actresses and celebrity activist lent their voices to the narration in this film.2

This movie was made aiming to inspire others to make girls’ education a priority and this film has since sparked a global movement. The film is now also a book, which features inspiring stories of more than 30 girls from around the world.3

My only critique to this movie is that I wish there was less music when the stories were told. I see how it can intensify the stories, however for me the music was at times too distracting and made it hard to hear what was said.

Over all though, the movie was great and all the stories made an impact on me. They all showed young girls struggling to get their education or not receiving any at all. If I had to choose one, I would probably choose the girl from Nepal who was sold as a kamlari to a master. Kamlari is like a slave. The reason for this is because it was known by the master that this was illegal, but not by her. Still, he kept her as a slave.

“One girl with courage is a revolution”

The quote above is the catchphrase to the movie. It implies that if one girl has the courage to stand up and fight for her and other girls rights, others will join. I agree with this catchphrase, because it displays how much power a girl can have by having courage. I believe that change can happen with just one girl helping another girl. An example from the movie is the girl from Nepal. She was herself a slave, but another woman came to her master every day to convince him to set his slave free. Eventually she was freed, and she started helping other kamlaries towards freedom. With this domino-effect more and more kamlaries will be released, and eventually there will be no kamlaries left. A revolution.

However, I believe that it must be extremely hard for a girl alone to be a revolution. A girl who alone shows courage and fights the system will often meet a lot of resistance, and without support loses hope. I believe it’s first when other girls join and stand together that they will get more power and make bigger changes.

Because of this it is great that they have made a film about just this topic. It shows the support so many young girls need out there who is fighting every day for their rights. Girls Rising is neither pure journalism, nor fiction. This way the filmmakers have managed to go beyond the facts into the human experience.4 It was a straightforwardly movie and it made me motivated to support girls in developing countries. As the success of the movie shows, I am not alone.

One of the elements in the movie that made me empathize rather than sympathize with the girls was that they do not consider themselves as victims. I could also relate to many of the girls, because of their interest in some kind of art. There was especially one girl. She could not focus in class and only drew in her note book. She got into trouble for this. However, her father bought her new colouring pens and a new book just for drawings instead of punishing her. I could relate to this because I myself love to draw and being creative, and I believe there shouldn’t be any limitation for girls in poorer countries to be creative.

I would recommend everyone to see this movie, because this is an issue that needs more attention. I believe this movie would change a lot of people’s minds if they saw it. This is because the movie portrays the strong hope these girls have and the importance of education so that they can continue making a better future. Without education, these girls will not stand a chance. I believe that for people who are not already familiar with this issue will probably realize that girls need education and more protection. The popularity of the movie, and the huge engagement people have shown, display how important this issue is.




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