Machines (2016)


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Moving through the corridors and bowels of an enormous and disorientating structure, the camera takes the viewer on a descent down to a dehumanized place of physical labor and intense hardship. This gigantic textile factory in Gujarat, India might just as well be the decorum for a 21st century Dante's Inferno. In his mind-provoking yet intimate portrayal, director Rahul Jain observes the life of the workers, the suffering and the environment they can hardly escape from. With strong visual language, memorable images and carefully selected interviews of the workers themselves, Jain tells a story of inequality, oppression and the huge divide between rich, poor and the perspectives of both.

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Critic Reviews for Machines

All Critics (26) | Top Critics (9)

This is not an easy film to watch but it is an important one.

Feb 8, 2018 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…

The dissonance of colorful fabrics and clanking, hellish physical toil makes for a powerful portrait of dehumanized labor conditions in a globalized economy.

Sep 21, 2017 | Full Review…

A bracingly physical documentary about the true cost of cheap labor.

Aug 11, 2017 | Rating: B | Full Review…

A film so obedient to current academic fashions in both politics and cinema aesthetics that it ends up feeling both contrived and a bit dishonest.

Aug 9, 2017 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

Prettified squalor has become sadly familiar in global documentary filmmaking. In "Machines," even at barely more than an hour, the style leads to diminishing returns.

Aug 8, 2017 | Full Review…

Machines proves both uncompromising and unforgettable.

Aug 8, 2017 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Machines


In Cinema, a picture is really worth a thousand words, and this is a visually arresting and piercing look into the daily work of laborers at a gigantic textile factory in India, exposing in a mostly silent way the ugly exploitation and ungrateful conditions to which they are submitted.

Carlos Magalhães
Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer

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