7.2/10
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14 user 41 critic

Black Gold (2006)

Unrated | | Documentary | 8 June 2007 (UK)
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An in-depth look at the world of coffee and global trade.

Directors:

Marc J. Francis (as Marc Francis), Nick Francis

Writer:

Marc J. Francis (as Marc Francis)
2 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Storyline

An in-depth look at the world of coffee and global trade.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Documentary

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

Amharic | Italian | English

Release Date:

8 June 2007 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Aurul negru See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,764, 8 October 2006, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$93,477, 18 March 2007
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Took three years to make. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Uninspired but informative.
6 May 2007 | by movedoutSee all my reviews

If you didn't already know that coffee is big business, then Nick and Mark Francis's documentary should hammer that fact in. "Black Gold" could have quite easily become another impassioned and reckless rail against globalisation but you get the sense that the brothers kept their eyes on the numbers, and directed from their head and not their hearts. Therein lies the film's main problem – facts are boring. It's neither harrowing nor heartfelt. The documentary is bluntly informative of the disparate levels in income of the Ethiopian farmers and the corporations that buy the beans from them on the cheap, and it's quite competent in enlightening consumers of the buried cost of a $5 latte. And on that level, it succeeds. Somewhat admirably, they lionise the Ethiopian people, both the underpaid farmers and the ones who refuse to partake in the hopeless work. But you can also observe that the Francis brothers were hoping for something more from their primary subject, Tadesse Meskela, a high-level representative from the Oromia Coffee Farmers Co-operative Union. The directors do place him on a pedestal for most of the film, even to the extent of including an embarrassingly effusive interview from Meskela's wife as the man proudly looks on.


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