Salt of the Earth

Salt of the Earth

Rosaura Revueltas
Director: Herbert Biberman Cast: Rosaura Revueltas
Rosaura Revueltas
, Juan Chacón
Juan Chacón
, Will Geer
Will Geer
Herbert Biberman


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Though it cannot help but lapse into dogma and didactics at times, Salt of the Earth is a powerful, persuasive labor-management drama. With the exception of five actors (including future Waltons star Will Geer), the cast is comprised of non-professionals, mostly participants of the real-life strike action upon which the film is based. Set in a New Mexico mining town, the film concerns the measures taken by the largely Hispanic union to improve working and especially living conditions for the poverty-stricken workers. Remarkably prescient, given that the film was made long before the women's movement, is the fact that it is the wives who keep the strike alive while their husbands are beaten and otherwise oppressed by the owners. Not that the miners wholeheartedly accept this; one of the script's many on-target observations shows the macho workers resenting their wives' intervention. The ultimate victory over the strikebreakers (led by Geer at his most odious) comes about as much from male-female solidarity as the workers' pre-set determination. Co-produced by the International Union of Mine, Mill and Smelt Workers, Salt of the Earth was assembled under conditions of extreme duress by a group of Hollywood expatriates, all victims of the Blacklist: producer Paul Jarrico, director Herbert Biberman, screenwriter Michael Wilson and star Will Geer. "Freed" of the strictures of Hollywood pussyfooting and censorship, the film's auteurs are able to explore several subjects previously considered taboo. As a result, Salt of the Earth seems even fresher and more pertinent now than it did when given its extremely limited first release in 1954.

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Product Details

Release Date: 07/09/2015
UPC: 0644827297221
Original Release: 1954
Source: Reel Vault
Sales rank: 53,802

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Rosaura Revueltas Esperanza Quintero
Juan Chacón Ramon Quintero
Will Geer The Sheriff
David Wolfe Barton
Mervin Williams Hartwell
David Sarvis Alexander
Henrietta Williams Teresa Vidal
Ernest Velßsquez Charley Vidal
Angela Sánchez Consuelo Ruiz
Joe T. Morales Sal Ruiz
Clorinda Alderette Luz Morales
Charles Coleman Antonio Morales

Technical Credits
Herbert Biberman Director
Adolfo Bardela Production Designer
Adolfo Berella Producer
Sonja Dahl Biberman Producer,Production Designer
Sonja Dahl Production Designer
Paul Jarrico Producer
Sol Kaplan Score Composer
Joan Laird Editor
Stanley Meredith Cinematographer
Ed Speigel Editor
Michael Wilson Screenwriter

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