The festival opens on the evening of Friday 18th July with a rare UK screening of the disturbingly expressive German documentary by Michael Glawogger:
“Meanwhile, the future is now in Germany, where a major smelting plant of bygone days has been converted into a bright and shiny leisure park. Work can be many things. Often it is barely visible; sometimes, difficult to explain;and in many cases, impossible to portray. Hard manual labor is visible, explainable, portrayable. This is why I often think of it as the only real work.”
The centrepiece of the festival is an exclusive pre-release screening of brand new feature documentary. In 1984, Margaret Thatcher labelled 160,000 striking miners, their families and supporters, ‘The Enemy Within’. It was to be the longest industrial dispute in British history. As the strike began, a group of miners emerged that were prepared to fight on the front line of every major battle. They were demonised by the media and despised by the government. Dubbed ‘Arthur’s Army’, they were to lead a fightback that would not just rock the government but would change British society forever. Still The Enemy Within is a unique insight into one of history’s most dramatic events: the 1984-85 British Miners’ Strike.No experts. No politicians. Thirty years on, this is the raw first-hand experience of those who lived through Britain’s longest strike. Follow the highs and lows of that life-changing year. Still The Enemy Within has also just won the Audience Award at the 2014 Sheffield Documentary Festival.
The story of Rubin ‘The Hurricane’ Carter inspired the 1975 Bob Dylan song “Hurricane” and in memory of, Rubin Carter, who died on April 20th, the Tolpuddle Radical Film Festival will be screening the Oscar nominated, The Hurricane, the 1999 biog picture directed by Norman Jewison and starring Denzel Washington.
Ken Loach’s 1985 classic on the miners strike.
Which Side Are You On? was commissioned for transmission as part of the South Bank Show (ITV, 1978-), but was not shown because of its “highly partial view on a controversial subject”. London Weekend Television, the commissioning company, felt that it was more of a political film than an arts film.
In the film, the company is identified as “Delaware Zinc,” and the setting is “Zinctown, New Mexico.” The film shows how the miners, the company, and the police react during the strike. In neorealist style, the producers and director used actual miners and their families as actors in the film.