It has been quite a few weeks that I have compiled a list of the Top Labour-Oriented Movies. After publishing the previous article, we have received an overwhelming amount of responses from our readers.
After witnessing huge participation, we have decided to list some awesome Labour Documentaries exclusively for you. Yes, that’s right!
Trade union documentary that
Here is a list of Top Labour Documentaries which you cannot afford to miss!
American Factory 2019
The trade union documentary that best describes money, labor, people is “American Factory.” “The feature-length story they tell here is complex, stirring, timely, and beautifully shaped, spanning continents as it surveys the past, present, and possible future of American labor.”
American Dream (1990):
In 1985, laborers went on a strike to protest against Hormel Foods Corporation for an hourly wage cut from $10.69 to $8.25 and reduce benefits by 30 percent, despite posting a $30 Million net profit. Nonetheless, complications arise when the National Union, United Food, and Commercial Workers don’t follow suit. In an attempt to seek justice, the laborers hire a Freelance Strike Consultant, Ray Rogers, who convinces them to stand their ground and promises a corporate campaign to draw national press attention. However, the plan backfires, and Hormel locked out the workers and hired replacements, leading to a series of violent conflicts. As the battle extends into months and years, the laid-off workers face financial hardships, leaving behind a scene of an unsuccessful strike in the United States’ heartland. In 1991, the American Dream went onto win an Oscar and was considered one of the best Trade Union Documentaries.
The Fight in the Fields (1997):
This documentary traces the history of the United Farm Workers’ Union and its founder, Cesar Chavez, in organizing a Minimum Wages for Agricultural Workers campaign. After many dramatic attempts, including the 1965 Delano Grape Strike, Boycott against California Grape Growers, and Senate hearings with Robert F. Kennedy, Cesar Chavez’s leadership helped bring about important changes Farm-workers’ lives.
Harlan County, U.S.A. (1976):
In 1973, in rural Kentucky, 180 Coal Miners went on a strike against Duke Power Company’s Eastover Coal Company. They voted to join the United Mineworkers Union for better safety and higher wages. As a result, the Owners of the mine brought in replacement workers and armed enforcers. In a span of one year, the strike turned violent, with guns produced on both sides. In 1977, Harlan County, USA, won the Oscar for Best Documentary at the 49th Academy Awards.
Roger & Me (1989):
In his directorial debut, Michael Moore depicts the economic impact of Roger Smith’s decision to close down General Motors’ several auto plants in his hometown of Flint, Michigan. As a result, 30,000 employees lost their jobs, reducing GM’s employees in that area from 80,000 in 1978 to about 50,000 in 1992. Roger & Me revolves around Moore’s quest to confront General Motor’s CEO, Roger Smith, and make him answer for his actions.
The Take (2004):
It tells the story of 30 unemployed workers in Buenos Aires, Argentina, who reclaim control of a closed Forja Auto Plant where they once worked and attempted to kick-start their dead careers. They set up shops in the deserted auto factory and declared their intentions to restart the plant as a cooperative business without bosses’ aid. To establish their own control, they survived the Police Violence, opposition from the Government, Court Trials, and Legislative System, and ultimately secured their right to operate it themselves, as a cooperative.
Working Man’s Death (2005):
An Austrian-German Documentary by Michael Glawogger, the film chronicles examples of hazardous and backbreaking jobs and the extremes to which workers earn a living in several countries worldwide. Excruciating hardships in jobs like Coal Mining in Ukraine, Sulfur Collection from Volcanoes in Indonesia, and Steel Manufacturing in blazing forges in China have been shown in the film. In 2007, Working Man’s Death went onto win the title of Outstanding Documentary at the German Film Awards.
Hello Cinephiles, do you feel we have missed a great Documentary? Do let us know!