7.5/10
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45 user 27 critic

Salt of the Earth (1954)

Not Rated | | Drama, History | 14 March 1954 (USA)
Mexican workers at a Zinc mine call a general strike. It is only through the solidarity of the workers, and importantly the indomitable resolve of their wives, mothers and daughters, that they eventually triumph.

Writer:

Michael Wilson (by)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Will Geer ... Sheriff
David Wolfe ... Barton
David Sarvis David Sarvis ... Alexander
Mervin Williams Mervin Williams ... Hartwell
Rosaura Revueltas ... Esperanza Quintero
E.A. Rockwell E.A. Rockwell ... Vance
William Rockwell William Rockwell ... Kimbrough
Juan Chacón Juan Chacón ... Ramon Quintero (as Juan Chacon)
Henrietta Williams Henrietta Williams ... Teresa Vidal
Ángela Sánchez Ángela Sánchez ... Consuelo Ruiz (as Angela Sanchez)
Clorinda Alderette Clorinda Alderette ... Luz Morales
Virginia Jencks Virginia Jencks ... Ruth Barnes
Clinton Jencks Clinton Jencks ... Frank Barnes
Joe T. Morales Joe T. Morales ... Sal Ruiz
Ernest Velasquez ... Charley Vidal (as Ernest Velasquez)
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Storyline

Based on an actual strike against the Empire Zinc Mine in New Mexico, the film deals with the prejudice against the Mexican-American workers, who struck to attain wage parity with Anglo workers in other mines and to be treated with dignity by the bosses. In the end, the greatest victory for the workers and their families is the realization that prejudice and poor treatment are conditions that are not always imposed by outside forces. Written by Bob Shields <rshields@igc.apc.org>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Banned! The film the US government didn't want you to see! See more »

Genres:

Drama | History

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

14 March 1954 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

La sal de la tierra See more »

Filming Locations:

Bayard, New Mexico, USA See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One of the few times a Hudson motorcar appears in a film of its era. See more »

Goofs

When Ramon is in the bar, his hands change position several times between shots. See more »

Quotes

Esperanza Quintero: Ramon, I don't like to bother you, but the store, they say, uh, we will not make another payment on the radio this month, they'll come and take it away... We're only one payment behind... I argued with her. It isn't right.
Ramon Quintero: It isn't right, she says. Was it right that we bought this... this instrument? But you *had* to have it, didn't you. It was *nice* to listen to.
Esperanza Quintero: I listen to it... every night... when you are out at the beer parlor.
Ramon Quintero: 'No money down'. 'Easy term payments'. I tell you something -...
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

The final credits are divided into "the professional cast" and "the non-professional cast." See more »

Connections

Referenced in Brush with Life: The Art of Being Edward Biberman (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

We Shall Not be Moved
(uncredited)
Traditional
Sung by the women on the picket line
See more »

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User Reviews

Background is more interesting than the movie
23 April 2004 | by dmurphy37See all my reviews

Not only have I seen Salt of the Earth, but I grew up where it was filmed. The story behind the story is almost more fascinating to me than the movie itself. I am related (albeit distantly) to at least one of the "actors" in the film, my step-father ran the projector for the dailies, and no one, and I mean NO ONE that I grew up with would ever talk about it. It wasn't just because of the black-listed actors. They were the excuse. This film portrays a part of mining history in southern New Mexico that to this day is still a sore spot. The film was made not long after the actual event (the strike of the hispanic miners), and was not at all flattering to the local police/sherriff's departments. It truely was, in my opinion white vs hispanic, and the whites didn't come out smelling like a rose. To have something they'd rather forget about not only filmed, but become so infamous and well-known did not (and does not) sit well with most in this town. For me, the movie is more a curiosity. I didn't think it was all that good, most of the acting was really terrible (including that of the Hollywood "stars") and the technicality of the film was even worse. To me, it's more interesting because of the outside "stuff" that surrounded it.


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