“Period. End of Sentence.” (2018)

Click to watch Period End of Sentence on Netflix.

Period. End of Sentence. is the 2019 Academy Award winner for Best Documentary Short.
Photo courtesy Netflix.

When a girl gets her period in the United States, she may miss a class.When a girl gets her period in a developing country, she may never go to school again. A period should end a sentence, not a girl’s education.The Pad Project, the major force behind the documentary.

Ninety percent of women in India do not have access to menstrual pads. They use whatever cloths, leaves, or ash they can find. They do not have access to consistent electricity, nor clean well-lit bathrooms that are safe for women. For this reason, middle school age girls have no safe place to change their cloths. Therefore, they drop out of school. Their situation is overwhelming and dire. Due to the short 25-minute length of the documentary, Period. End of Sentence. (known as PEoS from now on) focuses on a group of Indian women empowering themselves and their community through better access to menstrual hygiene products.

Set in Kathikhera, about 37 miles outside of India’s capital of New Delhi, PEoS sets up from the beginning the taboo around menstruation. Men have no idea what it is. “An illness only girls get?” Girls and women are pained and embarrassed to talk about it. “Only God knows why” women have periods, one woman says. “It has something to do with babies,” another mom says. Sneba, one of the documentary’s subjects says, “We are told women’s prayers are not heard during menstruation, no matter how hard they may pray. They say we are dirty.”

Click to watch the trailer for PEoS.

According to Access Bollywood:

“Feminine hygiene has been a popular film subject in India for several years, starting with Menstrual Man, the 2013 documentary about Arunchalam Muruganatham, inventor of a low-cost machine for making sanitary pads. Muruganatham then inspired two fictional Hindi films: 2017’s Phullu and 2018’s Pad Man, starring Akshay Kumar. Kumar’s 2017 movie Toilet: Ek Prem Katha also addressed the related need for clean, safe bathroom facilities for women in rural India.”

Muruganatham’s low-cost machine comes to Kathikhera. It’s purpose is four-fold: to bring menstrual pads to the girls and women; to teach women a skill, which is learning to manufacture menstrual pads; to allow them to earn money; and to offer women economic empowerment. All of these give women something I take for granted, freedom of movement.

Access Bollywood also said this documentary is a good introduction to the menstruation situation in India. I agree. I was flabbergasted and shocked by what I saw. I felt like a privileged rich woman watching PEoS, and I am not (yet). I am so glad this documentary won an Oscar. It’s the reason why I know about PeoS in the first place.

I decided to donate to The Pad Project because its doing important work across the globe, and in the United States. The women of Kathikhera kick ass. I wish them safety, self-empowerment, and economic freedom.


Click to watch the clip from the 91st annual Academy Awards.
Producer Melissa Berton and director Rayka Zehtabchi  accept their Oscar.
Guneet Monga served as Executive Producer (The Lunchbox, Masaan).

Ten out of Ten Mocha Angels on the subject matter. Eight out of Ten Mocha Angels for the soaring, feel good ending that doesn’t match reality. Everyone should see it.


This is Us (NBC): Looks Like We Made It

This is Us. Season 3, Episode 18. “Her.” Season Finale.


Photo: Ron Batzdorff/NBC

…And a little child shall lead them.

Thanks to Deja, their foster daughter, Randall and Beth did not get a divorce. Deja took Randall to one of her former foster homes. She shared with him that the couple who were supposed to care for her and other foster children spent their government stipend on lottery scratch-offs rather than the kids, leaving the kids hungry.

Deja said, “Nobody won in that house. Most people don’t win, Randall, but you did. You won the lottery twice. Once when you got adopted and again when you met Beth.”  She told Randall to get it together and fix his marriage. “You owe it to the world that let you win the lottery twice.”

From there, Randall decides to resign from City Council without knowing Beth has traveled to Philadelphia. She decided to move the family from New Jersey to Philly so Randall can remain a councilman there. She is going to open a dance studio that trains aspiring professionals rather than adults. Both get what they want.

Cue the Barry Manilow. They did it.
Photo: Ron Batzdorff/NBC

Fast forward to the future, it’s clear this is going to be a “’til death do us part” marriage. I was so relieved. R&B found their rhythm.

On another note, Tess is trying to find her way as a newly out gay teenage girl. That is going to be an interesting story line over the next three years of This is Us. Creator Dan Fogelman says the show is at it’s “midway point” and will last a total of six seasons.

The first two seasons were great. Overall, Season Three was uneven.

The three best episodes of Season Three were:

Our Little Island Girl. This was the all-Beth episode I wrote about. Susan Kelechi Watson deserves an Emmy nomination for it.

Songbird Road, Part 1. We find out what happened to Jack’s brother Nicky in Vietnam. This was a beautifully written and heartbreaking episode about a man still broken, alcoholic, and suffering from PTSD fifty years after he was sent home from the war. For Nicky, the war is not over.

Her. In the last five minutes of the season finale, set fifteen to twenty years in the future, we see that “her” is Rebecca on her deathbed. Her whole family is there to say goodbye. Kevin has a son. And Nicky has rejoined the Pearson family. That was a “whoa!!!” moment. That is how you end a season.

Seven out of Ten Mocha Angels for This is Us, Season Three.

Up next:

Period. End of Sentence (Netflix). 2018 Academy Award Winner for Best Documentary Short. Saturday, April 6

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