In collaboration with Turl Street Arts Festival, Hard to Get are screening two films:
The first, on Wednesday 7th of February at 20:00, is ‘Araya’, a documentary by Margot Benacerraf and Pierre Seghers. Filmed in the late 1950s, it shows the lives of those who harvest salt on the remote Araya Peninsula in Venezuela. The incredible poetry and beauty of Bencerraf’s images are at a dissonance with the harshness and cruelty of the conditions they present. Do the lives of the salineros demand sympathy, or respect? Do we welcome the approaching industrialisation of the salt harvesting, or mourn the traditions that are being lost?
The second, on Thursday the 15th of February at 20:00, is ‘Salt of the Earth’, a film by Michael Wilson and Herbert J. Biberman. The film is based on the 1951 strike against the Empire Zinc Company in New Mexico. It focuses on feminist political and social issues at the heart of the strike, which is called by the Mexican-American miners, demanding working conditions as good as those of the ‘Anglo’ American miners. The writer, producer and director were all blacklisted by the Hollywood establishment for being communists, and the film was denounced by American government for its communist sympathies. All but 12 cinemas in America refused to screen it in the years following its initial release.
There will be drinks and snacks available at the screenings.
Any questions contact: