Knots: A Forced Marriage Story – Review


Knots: A Forced Marriage Story is an eye-opening documentary about the practice of forced marriage that still goes on to this day in America. There are certain preconceptions around forced marriage, there are ideas that forced marriages only occur in faith-based families and they come from some religious connotations based on archaic beliefs. There’s also the idea that it could be something that’s done in foreign countries that most people have never heard of, let alone identify on a map.

There’s also the misconception that forced marriages only happen to adult women. Knots attempts to teach its audience about the truths surrounding forced marriages and reveals some startling facts, using three cases of women who have been forced into marriage.

Fraidy Reiss grew up in an Orthodox Jewish community and was forced to marry a man she had barely even met who was much older than her. Nina Van Harn grew up in a Christian household and she had no choice when her father chose the person that she was to marry.

Then there’s Sara Tasneem who at 15 years old was kidnapped by her father and forced to marry a man nearly twice her age. The stories of these three women are never meant to shock and appal its audience, instead they just simply state the facts of what happened and how they felt throughout their ordeals, in their own words.

The documentary itself not only talks to these women, but also to experts and campaigners who put out the facts and figures surrounding forced marriage in America and the legal loopholes that are exploited. Stating these facts plainly and clearly, the statistics are shocking, especially knowing that this is still an issue up to the time of writing this review.

Knots goes into great detail, not only highlighting the cases that give their first-person accounts, but also the ways in which families and communities can manipulate young women so that they feel that they don’t have a choice. Some even make them believe that the choice was entirely theirs when it wasn’t.

An important documentary for those who think they know all they need about forced marriages, because it will show them that they probably don’t.

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