Decent Factory: Made in China

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Movie Info

In a bid to keep costs down and profits high, a growing number of Western corporations have been "outsourcing" the manufacturing of their products to factories in other nations, often in Asia and the Third World. However, some firms have found themselves struggling with a moral dilemma, knowing that while it costs less to use overseas labor, the workers are often not protected by the same sort of regulations applied to laborers in America or Europe. In A Decent Factory, filmmaker Thomas Balmes follows Hanna Kaskinen, the newly appointed Ethical and Environmental expert for Nokia (the Finnish electronics company best known for their cellular phones) as she travels in China to inspect manufacturing facilities under contract to Nokia. Kaskinen and her colleagues examine both the physical conditions and the labor agreements under which the employees are working as they attempt to strike a balance between profit and fair play in their Chinese plants.


Critic Reviews for Decent Factory: Made in China

All Critics (7) | Top Critics (4)

  • Though it lacks a focus or greater artistic vision, Thomas Balmès' no-frills documentary offers Westerners a valuable glimpse into the sweatshops of the new China.

    Jul 1, 2005 | Rating: 2/4
  • Ethical capitalism may sound like an oxymoron to some, but that concept is a linchpin of this cursory, irritatingly facile look at the human cost of globalization.

    Jun 29, 2005 | Rating: 1.5/5
  • Unintentionally funny is still funny, and the documentary A Decent Factory, which opens with a misspelled quotation from Milton Friedman, had me giggling.

    Jun 29, 2005 | Rating: 2/4
  • Thomas Balmés's fly-on-the-wall documentary uses your cell phone charger as a case study in how multibillion-dollar multinationals are dealing with multihorrible working conditions in the overseas plants run by their subcontractors.

    Jun 28, 2005 | Full Review…
  • Spotlights what definitely does not come with your Nokia cell phone: who assembled all those microscopic parts, in what country, and whether or not they were paid minimum wage.

    Mar 28, 2007
  • This film exposes a more insidious kind of exploitation, one far more difficult to detect.

    Jul 1, 2005 | Rating: 3.5/5

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