Harvey Weinstein was a brilliant studio mogul and movie producer who redefined the viability of independent cinema in America and around the world. According to dozens of accusers, he was also a serial predator and rapist who wrecked the lives and careers of countless women over the course of his career. Produced by Sky News, Weinstein: Hollywood's Reckoning profiles the brave women who first came forward to take down one of the kings of the movie industry.
The Weinstein story is one of power and id run amok. The film features interviews with a series of his accusers who all share similar stories of humiliation and harassment. His list of victims included well-known actresses, journalists, assistants and below-the-line creative talent. He often dangled employment opportunities in exchange for sexual relations. When his advances were denied, he would turn verbally abusive. He'd threaten to end their dreams of a career in the film industry, and he had the clout to do it. In some cases, the accusers claim Weinstein used his considerable physical prowess to weigh them down and rape them.
In an industry that prides financial success above all else, Weinstein was the most celebrated figure of all. As a result of his unparalleled success, his immense sphere of influence, and fear of his wrath, his reign of bullying and misconduct was allowed to continue for more than three decades.
Throughout the film, those who worked closely with Weinstein attempt to explore his deranged psychology. We learn about the tactics he employed while engaging in inappropriate and oftentimes criminal behavior. We also meet people in the industry who saw the problematic signs along the way, but chose to overlook them out of naivete, ignorance or willful avoidance. In perhaps the most compelling and convincing portion of the film, one of the accusers provides commentary over a video she recorded which captures the prelude to her abuse.
The women featured in the documentary represent the dawning of a critical and overdue movement. Whatever the end result of Weinstein's court troubles following these charges of misconduct, Weinstein: Hollywood's Reckoning is a gratifying portrait of survivorship and a celebration of victim empowerment.