“Untouchable”—Documentary Review

**This post references sexual violence, which may be triggering to some readers**

The new BBC documentary Untouchable (Hulu) paints a horrifying picture of how Harvey Weinstein was able to commit dozens of alleged sexual assaults against women in Hollywood over decades. Weinstein’s wealth and power kept media at bay, shielding him from what was known to be an open secret in the entertainment industry. 

When Ronan Farrow was investigating the claims for what would become his 2017 Pulitzer-prize winning story, he approached Ken Auletta, a writer at The New Yorker. Auletta had written about Weinstein fifteen years earlier and had firsthand knowledge of his alleged crimes, but he was unable to find a single source who was willing to go on record against the larger-than-life media powerhouse. Weinstein, backed by powerful lawyers and ex-Mossad intelligence, was able to continue his alleged abuse until a few years ago.

The film documents the emotional testimonies of several women, dating back to the late 1970s, who recount a similar story of Weinstein’s aggressive tactics. The women’s stories are difficult and important to hear, and they share similarities of protestations and explanations of why it was often harder to leave in the situations Weinstein created. Many also talked about Weinstein’s common insistence that the consequences for the women—making an enemy in him— would far exceed the “five minutes” that a sex act would take.

Only 8% of Hollywood directors are women, an abysmal number that is driven by the fact that 94% of women in the industry say they have experienced sexual harassment/violence while working. The #MeToo Movement, investigative journalism, and content like Untouchable are changing the industry by shining a spotlight on its systemic misogyny. 

Take Action! Support the important work of investigative journalists by subscribing to newspapers and magazines, and watch Untouchable on Hulu.