Viewers in the Middle East can celebrate International Women’s Day 2023 on March 8 by tuning into TOD, a subscription-based OTT platform, to watch these ten female-focused movies and documentaries that reflect the ambitions, grit, resilience, and sisterhood of women worldwide.

TOD offers over 40,000 hours of premium entertainment and sports content in English, Arabic, and Turkish, including exclusive rights to major sporting tournaments and international titles from HBO Max, Miramax, Digiturk and Sony.

Subscription to TOD costs AED 10 for TOD Theatre plan or AED 18 for TOD Total plan, which includes TOD Originals, movies, series and sports.

1. Amazing Grace

The winner of audience choice for best documentary at the Naples International Film Festival, Amazing Grace tells the story of the extraordinary Grace Fisher. On her 17th birthday, Grace gets rushed into the hospital only to be recognised as Patient 101 with Acute Flaccid Myelitis (AFM), a rare polio-like disease with no cure.

The 55-minute documentary follows Grace Fisher’s journey from “quadriplegic floating head” to triumphant composer relishing a thunderous ovation in the concert halls. Gracie says it best, “My only limitation will be my imagination.”

2. Fall

Fall is a survival thriller from 2022 that charts the tale of two women who embark on a high-risk climbing adventure to the top of the abandoned 2,000-foot B67 TV tower: an anxiety-inducing, vertigo-inspiring construction of weather-beaten metal and rattling rivets in the middle of the Mojave Desert.

However, when the peril-laden climb doesn’t go as planned, the women must summon up every last ounce of courage and strength to devise a plan for a safe return home or die trying.

3. Aisha

A critically acclaimed movie that stars Black Panther actor Letitia Wright, who plays the role of a Nigerian worker caught up in Ireland’s immigration system. Devastatingly resilient, Letitia lives the trauma of seeking asylum, being defined by a foreign country and overcoming feeling “temporary” in a completely new system. Aisha brings to light the aching issues of immigrants and their rights.

4. Infinite Storm

Based on a true story, Naomi Watts takes the lead in this adventure drama, which chronicles her fateful morning hike to the top of Mount Washington. She turns her back midway as a huge blizzard approaches. But, on her way down, she encounters a lone, stranded man and takes it upon herself to get them both down the mountain before nightfall arrives, and they succumb to the storm.

5. Holler

This drama starring Jessica Barden is the story of a young student who joins a dangerous scrap metal crew to pay her way through college but discovers the ultimate cost of education is more than she bargained for. The would-be student is caught in a dilemma of choosing a promising future or a family she would leave behind.

6. Mona Lisa and The Blood Moon

With a cast including Kate Hudson in the female lead, this fast-paced fantasy thriller depicts the story of a struggling single mother who befriends a mental institute escapee with supernatural powers and embarks on a crime spree to make fast cash, only to find their luck running out.

7. Silent Forests

A character-driven portrait of conservationists and activists who are struggling to stop forest elephant poaching in Africa’s Congo Basin region. The story unfolds through various dynamic subjects; including one of Cameroon’s first female eco-guards, a grassroots wildlife law enforcement group, a Congolese biologist studying elephant behaviour, a reformed elephant poacher, and a team of anti-poaching sniffer dogs led by a Czech conservationist.

8. Queen Of Glory

The film is the story of Sarah Obeng, the brilliant child of Ghanaian immigrants, who is quitting her Ivy League PhD programme to follow her married lover to Ohio. When her mother suddenly dies, Sarah inherits a Christian bookstore in the Pelham Parkway section of the Bronx where she was raised. A follow-up on the classic immigrant’s tale, Queen of Glory provokes laughter and empathy as its heroine is reborn through her legacy.

9. The Reef Stalked

A film for shark movie fans! In an effort to heal after witnessing her sister’s horrific murder, Nic, her sister Annie and two close friends travel to a remote Pacific Island for a kayaking and diving adventure. Only hours into their expedition, the women are stalked and attacked by a massive Great White Shark. To survive, the women must band together, and Nic will have to overcome her post-traumatic stress, face her fears and slay a monster.

10. Eighth Grade

An exceedingly honest movie, Eight Grade holds up a mirror to the lives of teens in a social media frenzy world. The movie tells the story of Kayla, an introverted eighth grader who turns to YouTube to express herself, where she makes advice vlogs in which she pretends to have it all together. In reality, however, she is sullen and silent around her single father and peers at school, carrying out most of her interactions online via Instagram and Twitter. Her YouTube videos are a clever narrative tool that provides insight into her inner hopes and dreams, much like an inspirational online diary.

Abbas Jaffar Ali
Abbas Jaffar Ali

Abbas has been covering tech for more than two decades- before phones became smart or clouds stored data. He brought publications like CNET, TechRadar and IGN to the Middle East.


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