Which Side Are You On?

AMERICAN DREAM

Directed by Barbara Kopple

American Dream? How about American nightmare? Or, better, American tragedy? But however you choose to describe it, Barbara Kopple's intimate, intricate and compassionate Academy Award-winning documentary about a busted strike is without question an American classic.

Kopple's material is unpromising: a labor dispute at the Hormel meat- packing plant in little Austin, Minn., eight years ago. My dear, how quaint. Are they really still having these things? Yes, and they are more difficult than ever to evaluate. In Austin there were three sides: a management operating in a depressed industry and determined to roll back...

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