Women's History Month

Women's History Month

Newly updated! OVID celebrates Women’s History Month with a diverse collection of films about women. This cross-section of films includes a documentary on Chilean activists fighting for a better country, visual artists including Frida Kahlo and women campaigning for safe access to abortion.

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Women's History Month
  • Karayuki-San, The Making of a Prostitute

    Directed by Shohei Imamura • Documentary • 1975 • 75 minutes

    From the late 1800s to the mid-1900s, Japanese girls and women were trafficked out of Japan and sent to foreign countries like China, Singapore, and beyond to serve as indentured prostitutes. These women were called Karayuki-san.

    Shoh...

  • The Apology

    Directed by Tiffany Hsiung • Documentary • 2016 • 104 minutes

    THE APOLOGY follows the personal journeys of three former 'comfort women' who were among the 200,000 girls and young women kidnapped and forced into military sexual slavery by the Imperial Japanese Army during World War II.

    Some 70 ...

  • Fengming, a Chinese Memoir

    Directed by Wang Bing • Documentary • 2017 • 184 minutes

    Often cited as one of the great documentary achievements, Wang Bing’s dazzling tour-de-force — a gripping monologue recounting five decades in the life of a once-ardent socialist in the new China — is a testament to the power of oral histo...

  • How to be a Good Wife

    Directed by Martin Provost • Drama • With Juliette Binoche • 2020 • 110 minutes

    Maintaining a household and stoically submitting to conjugal duty are the skills Paulette Van Der Beck (Juliette Binoche) teaches with fervor in her homemakers institute. Her certainties are shaken when she finds her...

  • Riddles of the Sphinx

    Directed by Laura Mulvey and Peter Wollen • Drama • With Dinah Stabb, Merdelle Jordine, Rhiannon Tise • 1977 • 92 minutes

    Laura Mulvey, author of the seminal essay Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema, helped to establish feminist film theory as a legitimate field of study. With Peter Wollen, sh...

  • Life of a Queen

    Directed by Not credited • Documentary • With Queen Elizabeth II • 1960 • 16 minutes

    Compilation newsreel portraying Queen Elizabeth II from her childhood to the early days of her reign, sponsored by the Central Office of Information. This film starts with early footage of the Queen as a girl an...

  • Westwood: Punk. Icon. Activist.

    Directed by Lorna Tucker • Documentary • With Vivienne Westwood • 2018 • 79 minutes

    An intimate and inspiring portrait of a true icon: Dame Vivienne Westwood. Punk Rock’s Grande Dame and one of the most culturally influential provocateurs in recent history.

    After defining the 1970s punk look wi...

  • Memoir of War

    Directed by Emmanuel Finkiel • Drama • With Mélanie Thierry • 2018 • 127 minutes

    In Emmanuel Finkiel’s haunting adaptation of Marguerite Duras’s semi- autobiographical novel, The War: A Memoir, the famed author (Mélanie Thierry) recounts an emotionally complex story of love, loss, and perseveran...

  • Marguerite as She Was

    Directed by Dominique Auvray • Documentary • With Marguerite Duras, Jeanne Balibar • 2003 • 61 minutes

    Marguerite Duras (1914-1996) - best-known as the author of The Lover and for the screenplay for Hiroshima, Mon Amour (the classic 1960 New Wave film directed by Alain Resnais) - was one of the ...

  • Fundi: The Story of Ella Baker

    Directed by Joanne Grant • Documentary • 1981 • 63 minutes

    FUNDI: THE STORY OF ELLA BAKER reveals the instrumental role that Ella Baker, a friend and advisor to Martin Luther King, played in shaping the American civil rights movement. The dynamic activist was affectionately known as the Fundi, a...

  • I Am Somebody

    Directed by Madeline Anderson • Documentary • 1970 • 30 minutes

    In 1969, black female hospital workers in Charleston, South Carolina went on strike for union recognition and a wage increase, only to find themselves in a confrontation with the state government and the National Guard. Featuring An...

  • Althea

    Directed by Rex Miller • Documentary • 2014 • 83 minutes

    Althea Gibson broke records on and off the tennis court. A truant from the rough streets of Harlem, Gibson emerged as a most unlikely queen of the highly segregated tennis world in the 1950s. A sharecropper's daughter, Gibson's family migr...

  • Fannie's Film

    Directed by Fronza Woods • Documentary • 1981 • 15 minutes

    In FANNIE'S FILM, a 65-year-old cleaning woman for a professional dancers' exercise studio performs her job while telling us in voiceover about her life, hopes, goals, and feelings. A challenge to mainstream media's ongoing stereotypes o...

  • Killing Time

    Directed by Fronza Woods • Drama • 1979 • 9 minutes

    KILLING TIME, an offbeat, wryly humorous look at the dilemma of a would-be suicide unable to find the right outfit to die in, examines the personal habits, socialization, and complexities of life that keep us going. Part of the mediamaking move...

  • Notes on Marie Menken

    Directed by Martina Kudlacek • Documentary • 2007 • 97 minutes

    Martina Kudlacek, director of the critically acclaimed "In the Mirror of Maya Deren," brings us the story of Marie Menken (1909-1970), one of New York's outstanding underground filmmakers, who inspired and worked with renowned artist...

  • From the Journals of Jean Seberg

    Directed by Mark Rappaport • Documentary • With Mary Beth Hurt • 1995 • 97 minutes

    From the Journals of Jean Seberg is a profoundly illuminating exploration of Jean Seberg’s career from the brilliant filmmaker Mark Rappaport (Rock Hudson’s Home Movies). Mary Beth Hurt (The Age of Innocence) por...

  • I Don't Belong Anywhere: The Cinema of Chantal Akerman

    Directed by Marianne Lambert • Documentary • 2015 • 67 minutes

    I DON'T BELONG ANYWHERE: THE CINEMA OF CHANTAL AKERMAN explores some of the Belgian filmmaker's 40 plus films, and from Brussels to Tel Aviv, from Paris to New York, it charts the sites of her peregrinations.

    An experimental filmma...

  • Dykes, Camera, Action!

    Directed by Caroline Berler • Documentary • 2019 • 61 minutes

    Lesbians didn't always get to see themselves on screen. But between Stonewall, the feminist movement, and the experimental cinema of the 1970s, they built visibility and transformed the social imagination about queerness. Filmmakers B...

  • Searching For Gerda Taro

    Directed by Camille Ménager • Documentary • 2021 • 58 minutes

    SEARCHING FOR GERDA TARO celebrates the life and work of Taro — a charismatic Jewish refugee from Germany, an anti-fascist, and a trailblazing photographer whose work would be forgotten for decades.

    In 1935, Taro (then going by her b...

  • The Woodmans

    Directed by C. Scott Willis • Documentary • With Betty Woodman, Francesca Woodman, Charles Woodman George Woodman • 2010 • 83 minutes

    The Woodmans are a family of well-known artists bonded in their belief of art-making as the highest form of expression. But for their daughter Francesca — one of ...

  • My Imaginary Country

    Directed by Patricio Guzmán • Documentary • 2022 • 83 minutes

    One day, without warning, a revolution exploded. It was the event that master documentarian Patricio Guzmán had been waiting for all his life: a million and a half people in the streets of Santiago, Chile, demanding justice, education...

  • The Two Faces of a Bamileke Woman

    Directed by Rosine Mbakam • Documentary • 2016 • 76 minutes

    Rosine Mbakam left Cameroon at 27 to live in Belgium. Seven years later—having studied film and married a European—she returns to make what she calls a journey into darkness—to the village of her birth, and later to the capital city of ...

  • Suzy Lake: Playing with Time

    Directed by Annette Mangaard • Documentary • 2015 • 62 minutes

    Photographer Suzy Lake is one of the formative feminist artists to evolve out of the heyday of the 1960’s and the Second Wave. A master of the art of self-portraiture, Lake influenced Cindy Sherman as well as a host of other female a...

  • The Passionate Pursuits of Angela Bowen

    Directed by Jennifer Abod • Documentary • With Angela Bowen • 2016 • 73 minutes

    An inspiring film by award winning documentary filmmaker Jennifer Abod, PhD (THE EDGE OF EACH OTHER’S BATTLES: THE VISION OF AUDRE LORDE). THE PASSIONATE PURSUITS provides a window into the life of Angela Bowen who g...