These Are VICE's Best Documentaries About Issues Affecting Women
Seven powerful films which delve into what the world is like for women.
Women, obviously, are excellent – but being repressed for thousands of years means we haven't had as many opportunities as men to tell our stories of bravery, intellect, identity and power. Luckily for you, some of those stories are reflected in the VICE documentaries back catalogue.
Whether you’re reading this to celebrate International Women’s Day or you’re simply craving some acknowledgement of women's brilliance another time of the year, here's a list of the best VICE documentaries, films and TV shows we’ve made about the "fairer" gender being tough as nails. And they’re all completely free, ready to stream now.
Danica Roem: Virginia's First Openly Transgender Elected Official
Danica Roem made history on the 7th of November, 2017, becoming the first transgender person to be elected and seated to a state legislature. Roem's success in local politics has made a national impact in the US, setting the stage for other first-time candidates and transgender people to run for – and win – elections across the country. Watch our film following Roem in the final hours of her campaign below.
What would Sex and the City be like if it was about a sex-positive former dominatrix who doesn’t have shitty opinions about bisexual people, like Carrie Bradshaw? It would be SLUTEVER, the show about one woman’s mission to explore the kinkier side of gender and sexuality. In this documentary TV series, sex writer Karley Sciortino meets monster dildo makers, ecosexuals and blowjob bots to learn more about the fetishes that make us human. Because all we really want is to be accepted for the freaks we are, right? Season two is currently airing Mondays at 11PM. Stream season one free on All 4 here.
My Big Witchy Wedding
In Romania, witchcraft is not only alive, it’s thriving. There are hundreds of witches in the country, and they make and break marriages, cure diseases, cast or release people from good and evil spells, and predict the future. VICE journalist Milène Larsson first visited Mihaela Minca’s witch clan in 2016, but returned last year to witness the lavish wedding of Mihaela’s son Antonio to a young virgin witch named Beatrice. Watch what happened at the occultist wedding of the century below:
Ballet and Bullets
"Na Ponta dos Pes" (On Tiptoes) is a ballet project in the Alemão favela complex in Rio de Janeiro, created by 23-year-old former professional dancer Tuany Nascimento.
Her classes take place in one of the roughest parts of Alemão. The area is currently at the centre of a rolling feud between rival drug cartels and the military police, with many students in her ballet schools coming from families caught up in narco turf wars and urban poverty. Ballet and Bullets follows Tuany as she attempts to keep the ballet school open in the midst of increasing violence. Watch below.
At the intersection of violence and stability, progress and oppression, are women. In Zambia, child brides are forced to go through uncomfortable pre-wedding rituals that focus almost entirely on how to please men. In the US, sexual assault in the military affects women disproportionately. Gloria Steinem’s documentary series introduces us to the women who are fighting against systematic oppression daily, shaping not just their own futures, but ours too.
In her words: "By confronting the problems once marginalised as women’s issues, we can tackle the greatest dangers of the 21st century." Watch the full box set free on All 4.
When Alice Ruggles broke up with her boyfriend Trimaan Dhillon in 2016, he refused to accept her decision – and began stalking her. After his behaviour escalated, a frightened Ruggles called the police twice for assistance, but little was done. Just 12 days after her first call to police, Dhillon broke into her home, cornered her in her bathroom, and murdered her. Broadly met with the Ruggles family to learn about Alice's life, death, and the lessons we need to learn to keep victims of stalking and abuse safe. Watch below.
The Beauty Pageant Just for Girls with Disabilities
The Miss Arc Broward pageant, a competition for children and teens with special needs, isn't what you'd expect from a typical beauty pageant. These young women get the chance to perform onstage for hundreds of audience members, fighting any stereotypes that people might have about disabilities. Broadly followed Josie and Hannah Crank, teen sisters from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, as they vied for the crown.