East meets West in the most unlikeliest of places in this Netflix documentary from Barack and Michelle Obama’s new production company. If, for some reason, you’ve always wondered what would happen if a Chinese factory opened in the American Midwest, then look no further…
A Chinese billionaire reopens an abandoned factory in Ohio, creating 2000 jobs for local Americans and high hopes for steady work. However, the high-tech Chinese ways clash with the blue-collar workers, creating tension, cultural divides but also some unexpected friendships.
Expect a very human look at the American Dream, national work ethics and the reality of life for the working class in post-industrial America.
After receiving a prestigious directing award at the Sundance Film Festival, the film is gearing up for the awards season and may well win the Obamas their first Oscar.
How are the Obamas involved?
Following their departure from The White House, Barack and Michelle Obama set up Higher Ground Productions, a film production company in alliance with Netflix that would produce documentaries, scripted shows and unscripted entertainment that would highlight important issues and themes.
Having purchased the distribution rights, American Factory is the first film from the company on which the Obamas worked as producers.
Other projects from the production company include a Frederick Douglas biopic, an anthology series on overlooked deaths and a drama focusing on African-American women’s struggle in post-war New York.
Who made American Factory?
As seen in the video above, American Factory was made by acclaimed documentary filmmakers Steve Bognar and Julia Reichert.
The two have worked together on critically praised projects such as A Lion in the House, Making Morning Star and The Last Truck: Closing of a GM Plant, which American Factory is a follow-up to.