Stephen Maing and Brett Story’s tough and gripping new film about the fight to unionize the workers of an Amazon warehouse in Staten Island might be an observational documentary at heart, but this in-the-trenches portrait of grassroots organizing doesn’t leave any doubt as to whose side it’s on. Indeed, few movies have ever screamed “fuck you, pay me!” louder than “Union” does with its opening frames, which use footage of Amazon founder Jeff Bezos blasting into space aboard his self-financed — and unmistakably phallic — rocketship to set the stage for the struggle he’s avoiding back on Earth. Watching a mega-billionaire overcompensate on an interstellar scale would be damning regardless, but in this context it makes it that much easier to appreciate how cruelly his business empire is undercompensating all of the people who keep it in the black.
Of course, the film’s sympathies go without saying; if you want pro-Amazon propaganda, get a low-paying and perilously unsafe job at one of their facilities so you can watch the ghoulish anti-union videos employees are forced to sit through during their shift breaks. But “Union” is all the more effective because it doesn’t see the need to argue its case. Instead, the film is free to focus its attention on how difficult and inspiring it was and remains for the Amazon Labor Union to press that case into action — and even just to exist in the first place.
Maing and Story have both…
Read full article: A Film About the Fight to Unionize an Amazon Warehouse – IndieWire
The post “A Film About the Fight to Unionize an Amazon Warehouse – IndieWire” by David Ehrlich was published on 01/22/2024 by www.indiewire.com