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Which Side Are You On? Songs, Poems and Experiences of the Miners' Strike, 1984

Ken Loach’s documentary focuses on the 1984 Miner’s Strike, capturing a range of complicated emotions, situations, and circumstances.

Anthology 1985 54 mins Not rated

Director: Ken Loach


Ken Loach’s documentary recounts the effects of the infamous Miner’s Strike of 1984. Loach’s holistic view of a conflict that shaped modern Britain encompasses interviews with key participants, as well as platforming the songs and poems they were inspired to write during their ordeal. It’s an unconventional investigation, but one that is ripe with Loach’s signature focus and sincerity.

Originally commissioned for the South Bank Show, LWT refused to show the finished documentary claiming it was too politically biased. Channel Four eventually broadcast the film after it won a prize at the Berlin Film Festival. Its censure compounded the sense of a bleak period for Loach as a major filmmaker, while he struggled with funding difficulties and various political battles. His reemergence five years later with Hidden Agenda signposted a new phase for his career, in which he’s continued to go from strength to strength.