Another Body: A woman’s fight for justice
Another Body, a documentary produced by Sophie Compton, Reuben Hamlyn, and Elizabeth Woodward was presented at the 2023 GlobeDocs Film Festival this past week. The film follows a young woman named Taylor Klein who discovers that a deepfake video of her has been uploaded to the internet. Deepfakes are made by people who use a form of artificial intelligence (AI) to create images of fake events.
Near the beginning of the film, Klein is sent a link to one of these videos by a friend, saying she should see this. The video depicts her engaging in sexual acts, and is quickly spreading online, causing her immense emotional and psychological distress. After viewing the video and knowing it’s fake, she calls the cops. Klein felt unheard and frustrated as the cops said there was nothing they could do and blamed her in a way for this happening to her.
Julia is later introduced into the film as Klein’s old friend, who has also been affected by these deepfakes. In the film, viewers follow their journeys as they try to track down the people who made the deepfakes of them. Klein and Julia researched extensively and concluded that it could possibly be one of their old friends.
The issue arises when Klein calls the cops and gives them Mike, the suspect’s name. Cops explained that there was no deepfake law in her state, and they wouldn’t be able to do anything for her. However, cops called Mike, discussing the issue to ensure that this wouldn’t happen again. Mike never admitted nor denied that he created the deepfakes, and Klein remains conflicted to this day, living in fear wondering if she should confront him.
The filmmakers use a variety of techniques to tell Klein’s story, including interviews with her, her family and friends, and experts on deepfake technology. They also incorporate the deepfake video itself, albeit with the woman’s face digitally obscured.
Another Body is a powerful and disturbing film that explores the devastating impact of deepfake technology on individuals. It is also a timely film, as deepfakes are becoming increasingly sophisticated and accessible.
One of the most striking things about Another Body is the filmmaker's decision to preserve Klein’s anonymity by using an AI generated face and fake name. This choice is both respectful and necessary, as she has already been traumatized by the experience of having her image and identity used without her consent. By obscuring her face, the filmmakers allow her to tell her story without fear of further reprisal.
Another aspect that makes Another Body so effective is its exploration of the emotional and psychological impact of deepfake revenge, the unethical use of technology made to seek revenge. Klein in the film is shown experiencing a range of emotions, including shame, anger, and fear due to the deepfakes made of her. She also struggles to cope with the loss of control over her own image and identity.
The filmmakers do a good job of showing how the deepfake video effects the woman's relationships with her family and friends. Her loved ones are shocked and disgusted by the video, and they struggle to know how to support her. She also feels isolated and alone, as she feels like no one can understand what she is going through.
Another Body is an important film that raises awareness of the dangers of deepfake technology. It is also a powerful and moving story about many women’s fight for justice, and that even though this happened to her she had the strength to be an advocate for herself and others going through the same experience.