Good Example Of American Dream Movie Review
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The American Dream is a tantalizing documentary film based on the time when strikes were banned by the US government, however, some workers of a meat packing company still held strikes and spoke out for their rights and increments in wages. More popularly, the strike was called the Hormel strike, which went on for months and years and there were workers who lost their families, their homes and their ways of earning all to earn a more justice living and be paid for the work they actually did in equality to other workers who were paid more for the same work that they were doing.
An important lesson that can be learned from this movie is the lesson of bargaining and being able to get some justice done out of one’s legal demands in a political system. It was not wrong for the workers to go on strike because they wanted their minimum wage to go up to $10.69, which was not much of a large company like Hormel, yet the big fish will always find a way to go about its own ways and in the wend it is the poor worker who will face all the tribulations that are in store for him. Hormel tried to cut down the wages to $8.25, which infuriated its workers and led them to rebel against Hormel and their own international parent union. In the American system, the big companies eventually do what they have planned such as ignore the enormous strike that was held against them and do away with hiring new individuals who were kept on an even lower base scale wage at the rate of $ 6.50. The system keeps on going the way it wishes to without halting for anyone, and this is exactly what was done in the film. Koppel has focused more on what the workers and community face at the hands of their lost jobs and what they are going through emotionally and financially, rather than what the Hormel management does and plans for them.
The interesting part was the passion and motivation of the P-9 union workers who were so determined and sure of winning and getting their rights approved. Their constant stay at the pickets, their unflinching faith in the justice and legal system and their hopes that would never fade are actually very commendable. Also, the way in which this entire scenario has been portrayed by the director is amazing since a long time span has been captured very aptly. The intriguing matter is the questionable legal system where the workers hire new labor in place of their permanent staff that is on a rightful strike and they are replaced just so easily and that too on lower wages and the heartbreak that these workers have to face and experience. The heartbreak of these workers on strike was truly touching since no amount of money could compensate for the loss they had faced at the hands of their long strike against Hormel. There are certain expectations from these workers that have they took then right path or not, and that is what is the heart wrenching at what they experience when they are replaced and left helpless.
In the American Dream, one would hope for things to have gone in the favor of good and not evil. This is what makes us feel dejected in the end. Maybe if the P-9 union workers would have just let Anderson do the job and negotiate his way with the international union then perhaps things would have gone in their favor. It is always through a process of flattering the powerful and then going about the legal way of achieving the desired dream. In their case, they went their own way which made the most powerful of the lot get their hands on the more profitable investment and leave the workers with nothing. The destruction of Austin’s principles is evident from the film, where in the end, the union disfavors the strikers who stood on the picket lines and went ahead making its deal with Hormel and the company refused to re-hire the men who had struggled for better wages. Yet the truth was nevertheless the same, and it could not have been portrayed better if the film would have been given a positive ending.
Snag Films. (1990). American Dream. Retrieved from
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