Thursday, October 15, 2015

Documentaries by women

We're up to another night of Trailblazing Women on TCM, this time looking at women who made documentaries. I have to admit to not know much about most of the documentaries running tonight with the exception of Harlan County, USA at 9:45. It tells the story of a coal miners' strike in Kentucky in 1972. Apparently, that wasn't supposed to be the original focus of the movie; director Barbara Kopple was planning to document an internal struggle in trying to elect a new president of the United Mine Workers union. But while she was doing that, there was the strike in Kentucky, and that proved to be far more interesting.

Mining is also the subject of the night's first film, Araya at 8:00 PM, which looks at a Venezuelan salt mine and the people who work it.

Other themes for the night include women in World War II, in The Life and Times of Rosie the Riveter at 11:30 PM;

A gay black man in Portrait of Jason at 12:45 AM; and

Punk rock in The Decline of Western Civilization at 2:45 AM.

Apparently they didn't have enough time or couldn't get the rights to anything interesting enough to round out the night with one more documentary, so TCM will be running 1950's The MGM Story, which is similar to the previous year's Some of the Best.

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