“He Named Me Malala”: the voice of her generation

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Maren Roeske ’18//Staff Writer

Winning the Nobel Peace Prize at age 17, writing a best-selling book, speaking at the UN, chastising the President of the United States and surviving a death sentence from the Taliban define the public’s view of Malala Yousafzai, but her documentary goes beyond her actions to the person Malala truly is.

“He Named Me Malala” humanizes Yousafzai in the best of ways. She is shown as the young, playful teenage girl that is so polar from what is expected. Brilliant, enlightening, and wise beyond her years, yes,

Yousafzai's story is told in her documentary "He Named Me Malala".  The film premiered Oct. 2 2015.  Photo courtesy of United Nations.

Yousafzai’s story is told in her documentary “He Named Me Malala”. The film premiered Oct. 2 2015. Photo courtesy of United Nations.

but also getting a 61 percent in physics.

Yousafzai is brought back to earth from the inflated idea that has become her. She was scared of the Taliban, terrified of death. She is a young girl who gave up her home for the cause she believes in.

But it doesn’t short sell how awe inspiring Yousafzai is. Her fortitude and strength is shown in her humanity. It is stunning how brave she is and how deeply she cares.

Footage of her at the Syrian border, with the parents of girls kidnapped by Boko Haram and speaking in African school houses crowded with girls reinforce the importance and magnitude of the cause Malala has become the figurehead for.      

This documentary is no drab affair full of dark score and nior b-roll. It is real and human and powerful.

After seeing “He Named Me Malala” there is an urge to do something, anything to helped Yousafzai bring education to children around the world. It is inspiring, she is inspiring.

When Malala speaks in this film, the reason the Taliban shot her becomes clear: her voice and her message is powerful enough to stop them. Listening to her, it is believable that the world will change, that every child will be educated, that peace will come, even if Malala has to do it all herself.



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