Salt of the Earth

Heart rending realistic tale of Mexican miners and their efforts to fight the union for better conditions.
3.9K ratings
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Format:  DVD-R
sku:  ALP 4415D
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DVD Features:

  • Rated: Not Rated
  • Run Time: 1 hours, 34 minutes
  • Video: Black & White
  • Released: May 25, 2004
  • Originally Released: 1953
  • Label: Alpha Video
  • Encoding: Region 0 (Worldwide)
  • Packaging: Keep Case
  • Aspect Ratio: Full Frame - 1.33

Performers, Cast and Crew:

Starring &
Directed by
Edited by &
Screenwriting by
Composition by
Cinematography by &
Produced by

Entertainment Reviews:

Fresh100%

TOMATOMETER
Total Count: 12

Upright83%

AUDIENCE SCORE
User Ratings: 997
This is pretty amazing. Full Review
Time Out
Jun 24, 2006
Despite its formal esthetics and narrative didacticism... the movie has a a true force extolled by the austerity derived from the scarce technical equipment. [Full Review in Spanish] Full Review
El Pais (Spain)
Aug 6, 2019
Rating: B -- Kudos are in order for this extraordinary film for all it has to say that rings true about workers' rights, racism, and feminism. Full Review
Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Jul 25, 2005
Rating: 5/5 -- Unavoidable classic on a 1950 mine strike, made by McCarthy era blacklisted filmmakers.
FilmFestivals.com
Apr 23, 2003
Rating: B -- One of the most daring "social problem" works in American film history, this movie, created by blacklisted artists, also shows the limitations of making a working-class film within the context of American culture. Full Review
EmanuelLevy.Com
Nov 26, 2006
Salt of the Earth is a good, highly dramatic and emotion-charged piece of work that tells its story straight. It is, however, a propaganda picture which belongs in union halls rather than theatres. Full Review
Variety
Oct 16, 2007
More than a typical Miramax/Tarantino extravaganza, it's films like this that establish the historical precedent and importance of truly independent American filmmaking. Full Review
Filmjourney
Dec 2, 2004

Description by OLDIES.com:

In a gritty mining town in New Mexico, Mexican-American workers go on strike to protest their dangerous working conditions and low wages. They meet with fierce opposition from company thugs and local sheriff's deputies. After vicious beatings and the suffering of the miners' families, the wives and mothers of the striking workers take over the picket line in a final demand for justice.

Stylistically mirroring Italian neo-realism, Salt of the Earth was produced, directed and written by victims of the 1950's anti-Communist blacklisting, including Herbert Biberman - one of the "Hollywood Ten" who was jailed for refusing to cooperate with Congressional inquiries. With the notable exception of Will Geer (Grandpa on "The Waltons"), the cast is almost entirely comprised of workers who participated in the real-life strike on which the story is based. The only blacklisted American film in history, Salt of the Earth was banned for its daring political content, which anticipated the civil rights and feminist movements by nearly ten years. This film was selected to the National Film Registry, Library Of Congress, in 1992.

Product Description:

A controversial drama about the struggles of striking mineworkers in a small New Mexico town whose views are socialistic and surprisingly feminist. Many of the actors and the film's director were blacklisted after its release.

Plot Synopsis:

In New Mexico, Mexican zinc miners, fed up with the life-threatening conditions under which they work, organize a walk-out. The racist management of the company tries to end the strike, with a variety of extremely violent and cruel tactics.

Keywords:

Production Notes:

  • SALT OF THE EARTH was added to the Library of Congress National Film Registry in 1992.
  • The film was sponsored by the International Union of Mine, Mill and Smelter Workers.
  • When SALT OF THE EARTH was first released, it was considered to be a propaganda film in favor of communism. Some of its makers faced a McCarthy-era Congress, and its director served time in jail.
This product is made-on-demand by the manufacturer using DVD-R recordable media. Almost all DVD players can play DVD-Rs (except for some older models made before 2000) - please consult your owner's manual for formats compatible with your player. These DVD-Rs may not play on all computers or DVD player/recorders. To address this, the manufacturer recommends viewing this product on a DVD player that does not have recording capability.

Movie Lovers' Ratings & Reviews:

Customer Rating:
Based on 3929 ratings.
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Couldn't Be Better Movie Lover: from Columbus, OH US -- January, 13, 2005

Thank Alpha Video for making this unique, socially-progressive movie with a lot of heart available to a wide audience at an unbelieveably low price.

To say this movie is ahead of its time is understatement: it's ahead of our time, too.

You'll be amazed this movie even exists the first time you see it, because there aren't any other American films like it, to my knowledge.


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Product Info

  • Sales Rank: 39,829
  • UPC: 089218441591
  • Shipping Weight: 0.25/lbs (approx)
  • International Shipping: 1 item

Film Collectors & Archivists: Alpha Video is actively looking for rare and unusual pre-1943 motion pictures, in good condition, from Monogram, PRC, Tiffany, Chesterfield, and other independent studios for release on DVD. We are also interested in TV shows from the early 1950s. Share your passion for films with a large audience. Let us know what you have.
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