Directed by Matthew Walker, I’m Wanita shines a spotlight on Wanita Bahtiyar, Australia’s self-crowned ‘Queen of Honky Tonk’. Beloved for her song-writing ability and her desire to help others, Wanita has made a mess of her life behind the scenes. After over two decades of hard partying and sex work, Wanita has caused incredible strain on her family relationships. Now, after a legendary Nashville producer commits to working with her, Wanita has one last shot to break through the country music scene and hit the big time.
In many ways, Wanita feels like a unique redemption story for its central character. While Wanita offers few apologies for her life, we also see the burden they have placed on her. Having lost her relationship with her daughter and struggling in her marriage, her musical career becomes a form of saving grace for her. For Wanita, there’s a feeling of hope that she experiences through her music that she craves. In her music, she feels free. As a result, she will do anything she must in order to see her dreams come through.
More importantly though, Wanita also has the opportunity to work out her own struggles as she toils away at success. She remains incredibly passionate about helping the downtrodden. Her friends refer to her as the potential ‘Mother Theresa of Country Music’—she still finds herself held back by her own self-destructiveness. As she continues on her journey, Wanita realizes that there are things in her life that need to change. Forced to confront her demons like alcoholism and arrogance, Wanita slowly learns the type of humility that’s required for her to become not only the ‘Queen of Honky Tonk’ but a better version of herself as well.