Happy International Women’s Day!
You all deserve some friggin gratitude, let me tell you. What with all this patriarchy we have to put up with.
The National Film Board of Canada has a variety of films and documentaries online for free, including many inspirational stories about women. So – here are 6 simple ways to celebrate International Women’s Day the way you should: While barely lifting a finger.
The Burning Times
This documentary takes an in-depth look at the witch hunts that swept Europe just a few hundred years ago. False accusations and trials led to massive torture and burnings at the stake and ultimately to the destruction of an organic way of life. The film questions whether the widespread violence against women and the neglect of our environment today can be traced back to those times.
Sisters in the Struggle
This short documentary features Black women active in politics as well as community, labour and feminist organizing. They share their insights and personal testimonies on the double legacy of racism and sexism, linking their personal struggles with the ongoing battle to end systemic discrimination and violence against women and people of colour.
Click here to watch on NFB.com
Women on Patrol
This feature documentary follows Canadian police constables Martine LeRoyer of Montreal and Debbie Doyle of Edmonton on a 9-month tour of duty in East Timor with the United Nations Civilian Police. Combining intimate interviews, up-close footage and diary cams, the film documents the enormous challenges LeRoyer and Doyle face, from adapting to a new culture and gaining the trust of frightened communities to performing perilous and heartbreaking police work. Women on Patrol is a riveting look at the rebuilding of a nation, and how the experience profoundly transforms these women – as police officers and as humans.
No Way! Not Me
In this short documentary, social activist and educator Rosemary Brown speaks to the high school students about the incidence of poverty among women. The film outlines the role of women in the work force and in society, as well as the causes of and possible solutions to the ‘feminization’ of poverty.
This feature documentary uses animation, archival stills and live-action footage to detail the history of women’s participation in the largely male-dominated world of baseball and softball. Zany and affectionate, it features 7-year-olds learning the rules and skills of the game and 50-year-olds hitting home runs, from the early days of the Bloomer Girls to the heyday of the Colorado Silver Bullets.
This short film portrays the experiences of Rhonda Gordon and her daughter, Angela, when a simple bus ride changes their lives in an unforeseeable way. When they are harassed by three boys, Rhonda finds the courage to take a unique and powerful stance against ignorance and prejudice. What ensues is a dramatic story of racism and empowerment.
The Company of Strangers
In this feature film, 8 elderly women find themselves stranded when their bus breaks down in the wilderness. With only their wits, memories and some roasted frogs’ legs to sustain them, this remarkable group of strangers share their life stories and turn a potential crisis into a magical time of humour, spirit and camaraderie. Featuring non-professional actors and unscripted dialogue, this film dissolves the barrier between fiction and reality, weaving a heart-warming tale of friendship and courage.
Or, you can just listen to Beyoncé all day. Preferably while Jay-Z serves you champagne through a golden flute, though.