The Sunday Times


Review by Edward Porter

“immensely engaging”

The Guardian

Article on the best movies of 2021 from Africa, Asia and Latin America

“an uplifting and life-affirming film that never loses sight of the realities of a woman’s place in the modern Himalaya

Morning Star


Review by Maria Duarte

this powerful and poignant film shows the hardships that she underwent and how she fought against all the odds to take charge of her own story

The Upcoming


Review by Andrew Murray

“As well as being a remarkable tale of an extraordinary person, the genius of this documentary lies in its thoughtful examination of the genre and the subsequent impact. In other words, it works on every level.”

UK Film Review


Review by William Hemingway

“From He Named Me Malala (2015) to The Eagle Huntress (2016), young women are taking charge of their own destinies …. Now we can add to this list the superb portrait of a young Nepali woman lifting herself out of subjugation through photography and film-making”

Total Film


Review by Leila Latif

“this wonderful documentary… pays moving testimony to the power of cinema and self-expression”

The Guardian

Article by Rojita Adhikari

“Belmaya Nepali’s life changed for ever when, at 14, she was given a camera.

You Magazine

Article by Sue Carpenter

“What is remarkable is not just the hardships and tragedy this 28-year-old woman has endured but how, through taking up a camera, she has transcended them

The Guardian

Review by Phuong Le

“a stirring look at the painful reality faced by Dalit girls in contemporary Nepal, as well as Nepali’s stunning achievements”



Review by Keiron Self

“Beautifully and intimately shot, displaying the beautiful mountainous countryside of her home, I Am Belmaya is a celebration of a life grasped against the odds.”

                                             Mark Kermode, Scala Radio

Mark Kermode’s movie music show on Scala Radio, 26 Oct 2021

                                             Mariella Frostrup, Times Radio

Sue Carpenter interviewed by Mariella Frostrup, Times Radio, 1 Dec 2020 (from 01:07)

                                                            Girls on Film Podcast

I Am Belmaya reviewed by Anna Smith and Leslie Felperin, Girls on Film Podcast, 24 Nov 2020 (from 00:38:15)

“A really important film, beautifully done” – Leslie Felperin

Podcast review by Anna Smith, Beth Webb and Leslie Felperin (from 07:22)

“She’s a real fighter… [to see her] picking up a film camera and pursuing this thing she cares about so much is such a marvel to behold


Review by James Mottram

“a genuine story of empowerment”

Backseat Mafia

Review by Rob Aldam

“A criticism often levelled at documentary filmmakers is that they exploit their subject…. Sue Carpenter skilfully avoids these pitfalls by allowing her subject, and co-director, Belmaya Nepali, to take centre stage.”



Review by Ivan Radford

“Carpenter depicts Belmaya’s story with a sensitivity and unflinching intimacy, but its strength lies in the way we get to see her in action now – as she takes hold of the storytelling for herself.”

Far Out


Review by Calum Russell

“An inspiring, deeply personal tale of human endeavour in the face of harsh oppression”



Review by Dan Green

“a film… that says ten times more than a feature twice its length”

Film Review Daily


Review by Mansel Stimpson

“So heartwarming… an absolute crowd-pleaser”

Movie Reviews 101



a very important documentary that shows the changes happening

The Lancet

Review by Sophie Cousins

Testament to just how powerful and raw personal storytelling can be… A must-see”

Sight & Sound

Review by Ela Bittencourt

“wonderful” and “heartbreaking” sequences

London Net

Top 3 Films of the Week:

Critic’s Choice of the Week

“The power of art to give a voice to the oppressed and disenfranchised”


Review by George Savvides

“A brilliant document, which spans 14 years, on the life of this remarkable woman and eloquent filmmaker. Essential viewing!”

500 Days of Film

Interview with Sue Carpenter

Review by Jane Douglas-Jones

“Incredibly moving and inspiring… an absolute joy”


Review by Laura Saracino

much more powerful than a classic documentary, as [Belmaya] talks in the first person showing her reality unfiltered and unashamed of societal judgments

Closer magazine


“This powerful, moving documentary is both heartbreaking and beautiful in equal measure”

Assembly (a Malala Fund publication)

Article by Noreen Platubong

“Belmaya believes that her film will help to create real change for girls and women in Nepal, change she hopes will come soon, for the sake of her daughter

Kathmandu Post

Article by Ankit Khadgi

“…that training changed my life… I became more confident. It boosted my self-esteem, and I gained the courage to express myself in front of everyone” – Belmaya Nepali

The Conversationalist

Review by Lisa Goldman

” the most brilliant success of this absorbing, touching documentary is in its telling of Belmaya’s story from her own perspective

Making it: Women in Film

Interview with Sue Carpenter by
Malin Evita

Review by Malin Evita

“profoundly moving, enraging, grounded, and inspiring”

SBS Australia

Article by Dinita Rishal

“a tale of rebellion, courage and hope, in which Ms Nepali stands up to patriarchy and societal discrimination, and reclaims her voice through filmmaking. 

Far Out

Interview by Calum Russell

“Giving a voice to the voiceless, I Am Belmaya explores the power of film as a tool for creativity and reflection.

The Moment for Women

“There is strength in words, stories and the actions that film them. This is a story about Belmaya Nepali and her journey towards becoming a filmmaker, a mother, and a strong voice to those that are unheard in today’s society”

Review and interview by Shraddha Dangi (see pages 15-20)

Business Doc Europe

Interview by Geoffrey Macnab

“It was a story I really passionately wanted to do and I think it is going to have amazing ripple effects.”

The Table Read

Interview by JJ Barnes

“My favourite thing about documentaries is their power to evoke emotions and open your eyes to other worlds” – Sue Carpenter

Sunday Times, Sri Lanka

Report by Yomal Senerath-Yapa

“Belmaya is one of the most likeable people you could meet in a film, and remains herself whether in London or Kathmandu”

Sunday Times, Sri Lanka

Print edition of report by Yomal Senerath-Yapa

“Breaking barriers in the Himalayas”

Daily News – Life, Sri Lanka

Report by Sheshan Dias

...special not just because of its outstanding filmmaking but because of who made the film. Belmaya herself was cinematographer, director and actor in her own documentary.

Brunch, Sri Lanka

Report by Dimithre Wijesinghe

“an incredibly inspirational piece of cinema”

Docs on Screens

Interview by Carol Nahra

“a truly inspiring watch, not least for the chance to see Belmaya’s education in filmmaking unfold on screen, through her own lens”

Asian Culture Vulture

Review by Suman Bhuchar

“uplifting and inspirational”

Asia NewsDay


“Belmaya Nepali demonstrates an extraordinary sensitivity to her locale as well as to the social issues that lurk beneath daily life

Cinepivates, Greece

Interview with Sue Carpenter at Peloponnisos DocFest

 I hope that viewers will gain a unique insight into Nepali society and the hardships stacked against women, and feel motivated to spread awareness and get involved” 

Culture Vlog

Review by Joanne Ooi

“Belmaya is a vital force whose charisma practically pours off the screen but hats off to Sue Carpenter for razor-sharp direction and editing” 

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