the killing floor (1984 film)

All of the characters who work on “the killing floor” in our film, both black and white, leapt out of the thousands of pages of testimony by a group of workers at the Wilson Meatpacking Company in June of 1919. Movie Info During World War I, impoverished African-American father Frank Custer (Damien Leake) leaves his Southern family and heads to Chicago in search of work.

Book — Non-fiction. Backs turned even on the men…, Of course the nature of American television censorship means that while Duke’s film cannot realistically depict workplace injuries, violence, or sexual relations of any kind, it is nonetheless able to depict utterly grotesque racism and hate speech without much redaction. Mobile site. Lee’s screenplay weaves those histories together by charting their cascading effects on a years-long unionization effort by the stockyard workers. Stephen Williamson 3,116 films 1,232 15 Edit, Justin LaLiberty 1,720 films 398 11 Edit, An attempt at something comprehensive. Must see watch for any ostensible Leftist. Upon his arrival in Chicago he takes a job mopping the floors of a slaughterhouse and becomes determined to work his way up to butcher—something the mostly white union organizers at the plant quickly ascertain, and just as quickly utilize to their own advantage. PO Box 73038 Washington, D.C. 20056 1985. When you vot, “We then tried doing that while jumping through, The many ways that service workers have used creat, BETTER BOSTON ARTS: MARJORIE KAYE. Not just blank mercenary workers, it illustrates exactly why they might be skeptical of the union and exactly why they’d cross lines. Moderated by TV Reporter ( Jasmine Simpkins. “The project has been in the planning and funding stages for more than six years, but was delayed until the looms in the Boott Cotton Mills Museum were operational. Custer’s position in the union is not rewarded but tested from every angle, with each incident cracking the foundation of his faith.

As in most stories about duality, Custer and Williams don’t oppose each other so much as they infect one another.

Despite having already made too many comments about the credit sequences of The Killing Floor, I’ll conclude with a couple more. And the most thorough account of its decades-long financing woes is courtesy the Aug 1, 1990 issue of Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting, which featured a piece quite pointedly headlined “No Place for Labor on PBS?”. Of course the nature of American television censorship means that while Duke’s film cannot realistically depict workplace injuries, violence, or sexual relations of any kind, it is nonetheless able to depict utterly grotesque racism and hate speech without much redaction. Bill Duke’s feature debut, which premiered on PBS’ American Playhouse series in 1984 to rave reviews, tells the little-known true story of the struggle to build an interracial labor union in the Chicago stockyards. Book — Non-fiction. April 10, 1984 THE PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER On PBS, a tale of racial struggle By David Bianculli Frank Custer was a black sharecropper who left the South in 1917 to find work in "the promised land" of Chicago.

It is explored with dignity, style and compassion. The screenplay by Obie Award-winner Leslie Lee, based on an original story by producer Elsa Rassbach, traces the racial and class conflicts seething in the city’s giant slaughterhouses, and the brutal efforts of management to divide the workforce along ethnic lines, which eventually boiled over in the Chicago race riot of 1919. Cast: Damien Leake, Alfre Woodard, Dennis Farina, Ernest Rayford, Moses Gunn, Clarence Felder. Overall, it's impressive what Bill Duke was able to pull off with what he was given, but the film could be better. It's also a genuinely good movie, despite low production values and voiceover narration that is occasionally too blunt. Show Times . This book details the wave of racist violence that swept the United States in 1919, through the lens of Black armed resistance and freedom struggle.

was actually produced from an original script, and one that had a whole team behind it: The story is credited to executive producer Elsa Rassbach, the “adaptation” to Ron Milner, and the screenplay itself to playwright Leslie Lee, plus the end credits list about 15 additional researchers who pitched in at one point or another. That text-based passage reports a detail that reorients the movie in yet another new context, one that brings things back to where it all began—the archive. This was Bill Duke's directorial debut. By David F. Krugler. I really implore you to check this out even if you’re just a little bit intrigued, this film should not fade back into obscurity. 1984 2019. The film was the pilot production for a proposed ten-part PBS series on American labor history, but financing from public television for the …


The racist riots of 1919 happened 100 years ago this summer. And Williams’ hard-ass persona, as well as his hard-earned and bitterly held black-individualist philosophy, is not critiqued so much as it’s sympathized with, understood, poeticized, and perhaps even argued for. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. I have included narrative features, documentaries, and shorts. Low budget and made for TV, but with some good music and shot interestingly at times.

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