I Am Jane Doe

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I am Jane Doe
I am Jane Doe Poster.jpg
Release Poster
Directed byMary Mazzio
Produced byMary Mazzio
Alec Sokolow
Written byMary Mazzio
Narrated byJessica Chastain
Music byAlex Laserenko
CinematographyJoe Grasso
Edited byCollin Cameron
Production
company
Release date
  • February 10, 2017 (2017-02-10) (United States)
  • May 26, 2017 (2017-05-26) (Netflix)
Running time
99 minutes
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish

I am Jane Doe is a documentary chronicling the legal battle that several American mothers are waging on behalf of their middle-school daughters, who were trafficked for commercial sex on Backpage.com, the classified advertising website formerly owned by the Village Voice. The film is narrated by Jessica Chastain, directed by filmmaker Mary Mazzio, and produced by Mazzio along with Alec Sokolow. Fifty percent of the film's profits will go to non-profit organizations which serve children affected by human trafficking.

Plot[edit]

I am Jane Doe mainly follows the stories and cases of middle school girls from Boston, a 15-year-old from Seattle, and a 13-year-old girl from St. Louis. Their suits against Backpage put them on a collision course with judges, special interest groups, and Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act.

The film also features the attorneys involved with the various lawsuits. The lawyers hail from anywhere from a firm working out of strip mall in Washington state to Ropes & Gray, one of the oldest white-shoe law firms in the country.

I am Jane Doe also follows Congressional actions against Backpage and online human trafficking. The film features interviews from Senator Rob Portman, Senator John McCain, Senator Claire McCaskill, and Senator Heidi Heitkamp.

Release[edit]

The film opened on February 10, 2017 in select theaters in New York City, Los Angeles, Washington, D.C., Seattle, Boston, and Philadelphia. The film is available on DVD, by digital download, and, as of May 26, 2017, on Netflix.

Reception[edit]

I am Jane Doe has received generally positive reviews by critics. On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 91%, based on 11 reviews, and an average rating of 8/10.[1] On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 69 out of 100, based on 6 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[2]

Ann Hornaday of The Washington Post wrote,

"In 'I Am Jane Doe,' filmmaker Mary Mazzio reveals the sordid world of underage sex trafficking, specifically as it pertains to young women who were forced into prostitution, their ‘services’ made available on the online classified site Backpage.com…I am observing the self-evident fact that film has exceptional — maybe even unique — power to shape and inform our norms, expectations and desires. That might be the chief reason it matters so much who makes them... A viscerally emotional case for a common-sense reassessment of the law…’I Am Jane Doe’ offers a gut-wrenching reminder that there are certain rocks we ignore at our peril.”[3]

Katie Walsh of the Los Angeles Times said I am Jane Doe “a powerful call to action.”[4] The film was also highlighted in The New Yorker,[5] Film Journal International,[6] Elle,[7] Vogue,[8][9] People,[10][11][12] and on the NBC Nightly News.[13]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "I Am Jane Doe (2018)". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango Media. Retrieved April 13, 2018.
  2. ^ "I Am Jane Doe Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved April 13, 2018.
  3. ^ Hornaday, Ann (February 9, 2017). "Women Almost Never Direct Big Movies. 'Fifty Shades' Shows Why That Matters". The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved June 21, 2017.
  4. ^ Walsh, Katie (February 9, 2017). "Child exploitation, free speech and net neutrality tangle in fervent documentary 'I Am Jane Doe'". Los Angeles Times. ISSN 0458-3035. Retrieved June 21, 2017.
  5. ^ Friend, Tad (January 16, 2017). ""I Am Jane Doe" Takes on Backpage". The New Yorker. Condé Nast. Retrieved June 21, 2017.
  6. ^ Barsanti, Chris (February 8, 2017). "Film Review: I Am Jane Doe". Film Journal International. Retrieved June 21, 2017.
  7. ^ "Press". I Am Jane Doe official website. Retrieved June 21, 2017.
  8. ^ Felsenthal, Julia. "I Am Jane Doe Spotlights Teenagers Working to Expose a Website That May Help Keep Child Sex Traffickers in Business". Vogue. CN Fashion & Beauty. Retrieved June 21, 2017.
  9. ^ Felsenthal, Julia (February 9, 2018). "A New Movie Spotlights the Teenagers Working to Expose Child Sex Trafficking". Vogue. CN Fashion & Beauty. Retrieved June 21, 2017.
  10. ^ Aradillas, Elaine (February 8, 2017). "Sold for Sex: Underage Trafficking Victim Shares How She Was Saved From Abuse in New Documentary". People. Time. Retrieved June 21, 2017.
  11. ^ Aradillas, Elaine (February 9, 2017). "Sex Trafficking Victim's Family Fights to Put Their Lives Back Together: 'We're Making a New Normal'". People. Time. Retrieved June 21, 2017.
  12. ^ Aradillas, Elaine (February 9, 2017). "New Documentary I Am Jane Doe Focuses on Victims' Fight Against Online Child Sex Trafficking". People. Time. Retrieved June 21, 2017.
  13. ^ Snow, Kate (February 12, 2017). "New Documentary Chronicles Legal Fight Against Human Trafficking". NBC Nightly News. NBC. Retrieved June 21, 2017.

External links[edit]