What is the role of women?

Interview with Marilina Giménez, director of ‘Una banda de chicas’ (‘Girls’ band’).

Musician Marilina Giménez kept asking this question when she begun to work on her film ‘Una banda de chicas’ (‘Girls’ band’). It seemed to her that the role of female musicians in Argentina had differed a lot from the role of
their male counterparts.

The making of her film took place in a time that also saw the rise of a powerful political movement defending female rights in her country. In this interview she explains the political context that has influenced her work.


How do you describe your film in three words?

Feminism, music and politics.


How did you come up with the theme of the film?

The background for this movie is my band of three girls, Yilet, where I played the bass. When we started to have gigs, it was surprising to see, how many women there were making music – which we didn’t know about. I started to investigate on social media, on YouTube and Facebook.

It seemed quite weird to me that even though these female musicians did really good things, there was no  publicity for these musicians that I found. Why weren’t they in the television or newspapers? Or if you did get publicity, you needed to be of a certain type: needed to sing softly, play the guitar in a melodic style. The rest of us female musicians that wanted to play, for example, different types of music, the visibility was not permitted to us by the media.

Over time I started to ask more questions, like why did they group us together only because we were all women? It seemed a bit discriminating. So, I started to record things with a small camera.


You say your film has to do with a political movement, what do you refer to?

I started to make the film in 2010 and finished it in 2018. The year 2015 saw the rising of an important movement in Argentina called ‘Ni una menos’. The movement wanted to shed light on the amount of femicides, crimes against women connected to relationships with men, which were being hidden in the country.

An especially brutal femicide took place, and women started to demonstrate on the streets and say “Ni una menos” (“Not a single woman less”).

This movement was very strong and the whole society started to pay more attention to the misogyny in the society against women and to the aspects of inequality. So, my film was formed alongside with the political movement.


Did this movement have any effect on the society?

Thanks to the ‘Ni una menos’ movement some men also began to pay attention to these issues, not only women. Also the media. In 2018 we were close to passing the abortion law, which would have allowed us to decide ourselves for our own bodies. We hope that it’ll be passed next year.

Thanks to the ‘Ni una menos’ movement some men also began to pay attention to these issues, not only women.

This isn’t something that just happened by chance, it’s a result of a long campaign that has been going on since Argentina became a democracy in 1983. A small amount of women started to fight then, and now they have the support of a large amount of women. Until only some time ago it was still badly looked at, as a lot of women didn’t accept the possibility to have an abortion in the public health care system.


How do you see the future?

I only have hopes for the future. The film ends with hope. I hope that things will change, and that we will change them. We need to be aware of these things. I thought that last year we would have passed the law. It was missing only very few votes and I feel that it will go through the following year when it will be reintroduced. It will also give us possibilities to think about our roles as women in working life. It’s necessary that we talk about these issues and that we don’t agree to be manipulated anymore.

We need an attitude of claiming the power for ourselves.


> Female Empowerment will be discussed in the Cinema in Conversation talks on 25 October 2019 at 19:30 – Read more and join the event!
Written by

Satu Ryynänen


Interview by

Noora Pitkälä


Marilina Giménez (1978), Buenos Aires, Argentina. Audiovisual Designer.

She studied Image and Sound Design at Buenos Aires University. In 2003 she began her career as a sound recordist in TV and later in cinema. Among her most relevant works is Albertina Carri’s lm “The Daughters
Of Fire” (2018).

“A Girl’s Band” (2018) is her first feature and it had the World Premiere in 33rd Mar del Plata International Film Festival.

25 October 18:00