Programmed by Federico Rossin
Equal pay for equal work! Four female employees at a West Berlin supermarket, who feel heavy pressure both at work and at home, go on strike to demand the same salary that their male colleague gets. The band Ton Steine Scherben sings along that “Everything changes if you change it / But you can’t win as long as you’re alone!” With a lay cast, the film fulfils the demand for solidarity that it preaches – “this film was made by saleswomen and housewives. They came up with the story and acted themselves. The film students helped them”.
This is a graduation movie that became a key work in 1970s German feminist filmmaking. Cristina Perincioli makes an enlightening, didactic film with the radical aim of calling work and gender into question. The male chauvinism and patriarchy that reign in the workplace are swept away by women’s awareness that becomes a power grab – and the same political mission is accomplished in the making of this film: a student film crew avoids the pitfalls of classic militant cinema that always speaks on behalf the oppressed. Here, they write the script with the female workers who thus become protagonists of their uprising and empowerment. A utopic film that shows how social and economic structures can be modified in a collective effort.
Cinema historian, independent programmer