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Paul and Corey Cross the Streams: Season 5, Episode 15 [‘Harlan County, USA’ (1976)]

Paul and Corey Cross the Streams is a bi-monthly podcast in which hosts Paul Pakler and Corey Pepper watch and review streaming content. It’s the Great American Podcast where two friends learn about life as they float down the river of streaming services.

In solidarity with the WGA and SAG-AFTRA strike (the latter of which Paul and Corey are both members), Paul and Corey have decided to change things up:

For the duration of the strike, they will: 1) cover only films about labor unions/strikes/solidarity/etc.; 2) not cover any new releases (that includes Corey’s Pass or Plays); and 3) not recommend any streaming services for where you can find these films.

Following Paul’s choice, The Grapes of Wrath (1940), Corey wanted to choose a film they both knew they’d get to eventually – Harlan County, USA (1976).

The film is a documentary which focuses primarily on the Brookside miners’ strike in 1973, against Duke Power Company-owned Eastover Coal Company’s Brookside Mine and Prep Plant in Harlan County, Kentucky. The film won an Academy Award for Best Documentary, and Corey himself declared it “one of the best documentaries ever made.”

There is a lot to discuss, from the career of director Barbara Kopple to the 1968 and 1972 UMWA elections to the ins-and-outs of a strike to the heroism of the strikers and their wives to Marx’s Law of Value (a.k.a. Labor Theory of Value).


This Episode’s Focus: Harlan County, USA (1976)
Host’s Choice
: Corey Pepper
Corey’s Recipe Recommendations for This Episode:
Famous Kentucky recipes and steaks on the coals

Be sure to subscribe to Paul and Corey Cross the Streams on Apple Podcasts and follow us on Facebook and Twitter (@PACCTSpodcast)!

Special thanks to Tobin for our incredible theme song and Dave Droxler for our podcast’s logo and artwork.


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