• Pahuja communicates how two kinds of women blindly seek empowerment in their own ways. And yet, they are waylaid by a feudal system. ‘The World Before Her’ is a powerful documentary and I strongly recommend that you see it – this is the kind of cinema that will leave you shaken and stirred.

  • Shubhra Gupta
    Shubhra Gupta
    Indian Express


    The tight focus on these two worlds leaves out the other Indias that may not be confined to the single-minded rigour of either camp, beauty or Durga Vahini. There are not just two Indias, as a doyenne in the beauty business and at one time such a popular TV face, declares. There are many more. What choices do the girls who live in those other Indias have? Do they have any at all?

  • Anupama Chopra
    Anupama Chopra
    Hindustan Times


    This film is frightening but it is also deeply moving and significant. I urge you to time for it.

  • Suparna Sharma
    Suparna Sharma
    Deccan Chronicle


    As cinema it is absolutely flat. Talking heads talk and they are often repetitive. Director Nisha Pahuja seems to have no sense of the visual medium that is cinema and that makes her rather informative film boring very soon.

  • The World Before Her is a poignant, disturbing watch. It makes you wonder which will be the new India — Ruhi’s glamorous “modern” world, or Prachi’s traditional, religious State. And will either of these really be so different from each other?

  • Documentary shows two faces of the Indian woman…

  • Apoorva Rao
    Apoorva Rao
    DNA India


    ‘The World Before Her’ must be watched as to see how westernisation has in fact strengthened patriarchy and women continue to struggle to have the freedom of choice.

  • At some points, the documentary seems a little contrived with some unnecessary stats being bandied about, perhaps in a bid to make it sensational. Pahuja could have done without it. Otherwise the intention behind the docu seems just right. But having said that, this one’s a superbly gutsy attempt at showing the mirror to reality and such attempts should always be encouraged. Go watch.

  • The film’s most touching moment comes when a mother reveals that her husband wanted to dispose of their girl child, and the child went on to achieve massive success. It’s when you realise that The World Before Her is one of the most important, skillfully made and powerfully provocative films to come in a long time.

  • The power of The World Before Her is its sensitive alertness to how these two very different platforms for Indian women both appear to be rotten planks. For all their apparent differences, Durga Vahini and Miss India have a lot in common. Whether in India or Bharat, it seems all anyone wants to do with women is mould them while pretending to empower them.

  • Pronoti Datta
    Pronoti Datta
    Mumbai Boss


    The World Before Her also offers a rare window into the goings-on of the Durga Vahini. While the propaganda and physical training that take place in the widespread Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) shakhas are well documented, there’s little in the popular domain on the Durga Vahini. It’s unnerving to see the camp churn out rabid young girls who, while endearing as sprightly adolescents usually are, induce mild panic over the future of this country. Hopefully this is an aspect of the Hindu right that will be contained within a few camps during the reign of the BJP-dominated National Democratic Alliance.

  • Juhi Matta
    Juhi Matta


    The World Before Her follows two fascinating women, who attempt to bring about a change in their own way. It is recommended for anyone looking for an entertaining film that also gets the viewers thinking.

  • The reward of watching such non-fiction on the big screen, or the magnification of unspoken intimacy and shared history, is a discomfiting thrill. That’s the response Nisha Pahuja’s The World Before Her extracted from me. In the best tradition of American documentary film-making, which allows subjects to speak for themselves and the viewer to absorb what she or he wants, Pahuja’s film about Ruhi, a beauty-contest aspirant from a middle-class family in Jaipur and Prachi, an opponent of that aspiration, is not as much an eye-opener as it is an example of clever, narrative non-fiction.

  • A vivid journey on the trail of female emancipation…A must-see!

  • The World Before Her is the kind of film that you can write and talk about for longer than you can imagine. Hence, it is also an important film; the discomfort which it engenders being a measure of which face you represent, of the ugly world we live in.

  • Nisha’s victory as a filmmaker lies in her ability to draw out candid responses from her subjects and letting us judge the truth without really trying hard to put a spin around the film.