Made in Bangladesh

All Equal? Sisters Truth To Power
Closed CaptionsSubtitles
Director: Rubaiyat Hossain | Countries of production: Bangladesh, Denmark, France, Portugal | Year: 2019 | Length: 95 min
Language: Bengali with English subtitles | Age: 12+ years

Screened as part of TOAFF20

Shimu works as a seamstress in one of the many thousand garment factories that produce Bangladesh’s most valuable export commodities: the impossibly cheap clothes sold by fast fashion brands such as H&M, Uniqlo, Zara or Primark.

When a fire results in the death of a co-worker, Shimu’s outrage at the unsafe working conditions she and her friends labour under threatens to fizzle into powerless anger – until she comes into contact with a local women’s rights organiser. Invigorated by Shimu’s determination and a collective sense of purpose, the workers defy management threats and their husbands’ disapproval to form a union.

Bangladeshi director Rubaiyat Hossain’s vibrant and hopeful film was informed by hundreds of interviews with female garment workers. Shimu’s story pays tribute to their struggle against the constraints of their domestic and public lives – while Made in Bangladesh presents an impassioned, beautifully crafted exposé of exploitative labour practices and the global economic forces that fuel them.

Content notes:
Contains scenes of violent intimidation, references to sexual violence and domestic abuse.

Screened as part of TOAFF20

“Made in Bangladesh challenges stereotypes while revealing the relentless pressure of fashion’s supply chain” The Guardian

“Neither hopeless nor sugar-coated, Rubaiyat Hossain’s Made in Bangladesh is a compelling drama about the difficulties of attaining justice.” Seventh Row

“Hossain has crafted an urgent cry for workers’ rights, and a vision of feminist solidarity in the face of overwhelming opposition” Cinema Scope