Women Talking opens with a note from the author in which she describes her novel as both "a reaction through fiction" to true-life events and "an act of female imagination." The true-life events the author Miriam Toews refers to occurred in the Manitoba Colony, a remote and isolated community in Bolivia. The film takes place not in Bolivia but on a farm somewhere in the United States in 2010.

Adapted from the aforementioned novel and directed by Sarah Polley the story revolves around eight women from an isolated religious community, the setting is very much as you would imagine an Amish community to be, who are trying to decide if they should leave or stay after they discover that the men have been drugging and raping them at night for several years.

The eight women (amongst them are Rooney Mara, Clare Foy, Jessie Buckley, Judith Ivey and Francis McDormand) who were are all denied an education by the men have to rely on August the school teacher (Ben Whishaw) who is the one man they trust to take down the minutes. The women must vote before the men return from a nearby city where they have gone to pay the bail of one of the women’s attackers.

I wasn’t sure what I was going to make of a film involving a group of people sitting about talking in a barn but absolutely loved Women Talking. Terrific acting from everyone involved, a story that is as compelling as it is distressing and fantastic cinematography all made for an absorbing and riveting piece of filmmaking.

Highly recommended.


Women Talking

1h 44m

Director: Sarah Polley
Cast: Frances McDormand, Jessie Buckley, Rooney Mara, Claire Foy, Ben Whishaw

UK Release: Cinemas 10th February 2023
US Release December 23rd – In Select Theaters
January 6, 2023 – Expanding in Theaters
January 27, 2023 – Wide Opening