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Among Women

2013 DOK Leipzig, International Programme Documentary Film
Netherlands | 2012 | 52 min. | Dutch, English | English subtitles | German Premiere
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Among Women | Onder Vrouwen

Hips move rhythmically, bodies become entwined, a sexual dance is practised which at some point leads to a climax that will transport the dancer to another level. We are not in some night club in a European metropolis; we are among women in Zambia preparing each other for marriage. This is where they learn how to stay in control during intercourse, which naturally includes women pleasuring themselves. This is also where women are familiarised with the sight of the blood of defloration by making them cut the throat of a chicken clamped between their thighs. But women are not to behave like chickens under any circumstances! At any rate, it is said that after completing this course the ladies are able to carry their marriage, including the husband involved, “like a burden on their heads”.
Kim Brand approaches the rituals and thinking of another culture, not least by reflecting on her own relationship back home in Holland, opening quite original perspectives on the experience of pride, freedom, and happiness. An instructive film from every angle. We’re welcome to applaud these women at the end, as they do only after completing the act with their husband.

Claudia Lehmann
Original Title: Onder Vrouwen
Country: Netherlands
Year: 2012
Language: Dutch, English
Subtitle: English
Runtime: 52 min.
Format: HDcam
Color: Colour
Director: Kim Brand
Producer: Hasse van Nunen
Cinematographer: Suzan van Steenwijk
Editor: Joël Hielckert
Music: Harry de Wit
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The texts to the Documentary Competition films and the International Programme films were written by the members of the selection committee. All quotes from DOK Leipzig catalogue articles must be identified as such and cite the author’s name. All articles where no author’s name is given are production notes.