Film Review: Salt of the Earth


Salt of the Earth, a new Sony Pictures Classics doc narrated and codirected by Wim Wenders, is a somber retrospective of the prodigious photographer Sebastião Salgado rendered, fittingly, in black and white. The 71-year-old Brazilian gained his acclaim shooting war, manual labor (Workers), and mass displacement (Migrations). On screen, as he hopscotches from one calamity to the next, we can see his faith in humanity eroding. “We humans are terrible animals,” he proclaims at one point, later adding: “It’s an endless story of repression, a tale of madness.” This visually stunning film helps us understand why Salgado, like other photographers who focus on human misery, has sought respite in more heartening projects: His most recent, Genesis, documents Earth’s natural wonders.

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily crazy—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America will move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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