Category Archives: Working Class


Following his documentary I AM NOT YOUR NEGRO, Raoul Peck takes on the story of the formative friendship of Karl Marx (August Diehl) and Friedrich Engels (Stefan Konarske). From Germany to France to England, the young thinkers pursue justice for the working class, who toiled under obscenely exploitative conditions to enrich their employers (including Engels’ father, a mill owner) during the peak of the Industrial Revolution. Peck crafts an accessible biopic about these two larger-than-life thinkers, taking them down from their historicized pedestals and allowing viewers to relate to them as young strivers disrupting an inequitable status quo through the power of persuasion and organization. Official selection, 2017 Berlin International Film Festival. DIR/SCR/PROD Raoul Peck; SCR Pascal Bonitzer; PROD Nicolas Blanc, Rémi Grellety, Robert Guédiguian. Germany/France/Belgium, 2017, color, 118 min. In German, English and French with English subtitles. NOT RATED
Run Time: 118 Minutes
Genre: Historical drama



This multilayered examination of the struggle of the blue-collar working class holds a mirror to the political landscape in contemporary Portugal, and runs the gamut from cinema vérité to neorealist musical. Employees at an elevator parts manufacturer catch thieves robbing the factory. But the thieves have been hired by the management, who soon order the workers to report for their shifts and do nothing until the company-wide layoffs can begin. Factions form around those who want to strike and save their jobs and those who just want a decent severance package. FIPRESCI Prize, 2017 Cannes Film Festival; Official Selection, 2017 Toronto, Karlovy Vary, Busan film festivals. DIR/SCR/PROD Pedro Pinho; SCR/PROD Tiago Hespanha, Luisa Homem, Leonor Noivo; PROD João Matos, Susana Nobre. Portugal, 2017, color, 177 min. In Portuguese and French with English subtitles. NOT RATED
Run Time: 177 Minutes
Genre: Drama



2018 Oscar Selection, Slovenia
Since leaving Bosnia in the 1970s, Alija (Leon Lučev) has been working as a miner in Slovenia’s Zasavje coal region. One of many migrant workers employed in a failing industry, Alija is afraid to refuse when he is tasked with opening a long-sealed mineshaft to declare it empty. When he opens the abandoned shaft, however, Alija uncovers some terrible secrets. Refusing to bow to his employers’ demands to stay quiet, Alija sets out to expose the truth. Based on a true story, Slovenian director Hanna Slak’s (BLIND SPOT) powerful third feature reveals a dark chapter in Slovenia’s history with honesty and compassion. Winner, Best Director and Best Actor, 2017 Festival of Slovenian Film. DIR/SCR Hanna Slak; PROD Miha Knific, Siniša Juričić. Slovenia/Croatia, 2017, color, 98 min. In Slovenian with English subtitles. NOT RATED
Run Time: 98 Minutes
Genre: Thriller


Death in Sarajevo

Smrt u Sarajevu

Bosnia & Herzegovina, 2016
85 minutes, Color
Official website

Winner of the Jury Grand Prix and the International Film Critics Award at last year’s Berlin International Film Festival, Death in Sarajevo is a timely drama from acclaimed Bosnian filmmaker Danis Tanovic (FFDC 2015’s Tigers, the 2001 Foreign Language Oscar®-winning No Man’s Land). At Sarajevo’s Hotel Europe, preparations are under way to host the European Union’s centenary commemorating the assassination of Franz Ferdinand by Gavrilo Princip that triggered World War I, a French actor is in the Presidential Suite rehearsing the Bernard-Henri Levy play from which the hotel got its name, and a TV crew is filming local scholars discussing regional history. Manager Omer is dealing with a cash flow problem and a looming strike by workers while his assistant, Lamija, tries to keep things organized in the face of growing discord. What could possibly go wrong in the course of this highly charged history lesson?—Eddie Cockrell

In Bosnian with English subtitles


Xmas without China (2013)

Directed By: Alicia Dwyerl
Runtime: 70 min
Stars: – – –

Synopsis: Exploring the intersection of commercialism and immigration in American culture, the documentary filmmakers follow their friend and fellow filmmaker Tom Xia on an intimate, humorous journey to get to know his neighbors


The Measure of a Man (2015)

Directed by: Stéphane Brizé
Running Time: 93 min
Starring: N/A


Synopsis:  An unemployed factory worker is trying to make ends meet in working-class France.

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Posted by on February 22, 2017 in A: 2017 Shortlist, Working Class


In Dubious Battle (2016)

Based off the John Steinbeck novel: an activist gets caught up in the labor movement for farm workers in California during the 1930s.

Director: James Franco