Highly acclaimed Sundance documentary exposes the gendered filmmaking lens, available for North American colleges and universities


SAN FRANCISCO – December 20, 2022 – Kanopy, the leading streaming provider of essential films for colleges and universities, today announced award-winning filmmaker Nina Menkes’s lauded documentary Brainwashed: Sex – Camera – Power is now available for the entire campus. Distributed by Kino Lorber and streaming exclusively on Kanopy, Brainwashed can be added by colleges and universities in North America via Patron-Driven Acquisition or by licensing the title. This paradigm-shifting film is an essential addition to gender and film studies courses and a vital new entry for any curriculum concerned with nurturing “the whole student.”

Based on director Nina Menkes’s seminal cinematic lecture, “Sex and Power, the Visual Language of Cinema,” Brainwashed is rapidly becoming an essential resource for film study. Using 175 film clips by A-list directors from 1896 through the present, Brainwashed exposes how a gendered system of shot design has become entrenched in film industries worldwide, contributing to a pervasive environment of sexual harassment, assault and employment discrimination against women. The sheer volume of clips in the film presents an overwhelming and eye-opening expose of these widely accepted visual “rules”.

Brainwashed also includes powerful interviews with an all-star cast of women and non-binary artists including Julie Dash, Eliza Hittman, Laura Mulvey, Maria Giese, Penelope Spheeris and Joey Soloway.

“I’m excited that Brainwashed is now available on Kanopy, making the film easily accessible to all film schools and universities, allowing students, staff and the entire academic community to connect with the crucial message this film uncovers,” said Nina Menkes. “It’s critical that new generations of filmmakers and viewers understand the power of visual language in order to expand the conversation about ways this long-standing system has affected all of our lives.”

Jason Tyrrell, Kanopy General Manager, agreed and commented on the importance of expanding distribution to colleges and universities: “Making Brainwashed widely available, including for academic use, ensures a new generation of filmmakers, researchers and cinema enthusiasts will have access to a powerful tool to help re-contextualize the entire history of the art form. Universities and library communities that view Nina Menkes’s film will be foundational in creating and supporting an industry that can begin to acknowledge and think critically about how the male gaze has impacted both the creation of art and its imprint on public life.”

Learn more about Kanopy.


About Kanopy

Kanopy is the leading streaming provider of high-quality films that matter. The company partners with filmmakers and movie studios around the globe to give movie-lovers free access to films that stimulate imagination, promote learning and spark meaningful conversations. Many films on Kanopy—including from iconic suppliers like the BBC, NEON, Samuel Goldwyn Films, HISTORY, A&E, First Run Features Kino Lorber and IFC Films—are unavailable elsewhere. The Kanopy app is available on iOS and Android and all major streaming devices, including Roku, Apple TV, Android TV, Amazon Fire TV and Samsung Smart TV. In 2021, OverDrive acquired Kanopy to bring together the single most extensive catalog of premium content and the best-in-class user experience for video, ebooks, audiobooks, magazines and additional streaming media. For more information, visit www.kanopy.com.


About Kino Lorber

With a library of over 4,000 titles, Kino Lorber Inc. has been a leader in independent art house distribution for 35 years, releasing 30 films per year theatrically under its Kino Lorber, Kino Repertory and Alive Mind Cinema banners, garnering seven Academy Award® nominations in nine years. In addition, the company brings over 350 titles yearly to the home entertainment and educational markets through physical and digital media releases. With an expanding family of distributed labels, Kino Lorber handles releases in ancillary media for Zeitgeist Films, Milestone Films, Cohen Media Group, Greenwich Entertainment, Artsploitation, Palisades Tartan, Menemsha Films, Raro Video, and others, placing physical titles through all wholesale, retail, and direct-to-consumer channels, as well as direct digital distribution through over 40 OTT services including all major TVOD and SVOD platforms. In 2019, the company launched its new art house digital channel Kino Now which features over 1300 titles from the acclaimed Kino Lorber library. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Kino Marquee initiative was launched pioneering “virtual cinema” releases of art house films with revenue shares that allow audiences to support almost 500 local independent theaters. Kino Lorber was honored with a Special Award from the New York Film Critics Circle for this effort. In 2021, the company launched Kino Cult, an AVOD channel specializing in new and rare, acclaimed genre films. In 2022, Kino Lorber acquired streamer MHz Choice, the leading North American destination for acclaimed international TV.

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