Matewan (1987)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

This is the story of a 1920 coal-mine strike.

Rating: PG-13 (adult situations/language, violence)
Genre: Drama
Directed By:
Written By: John Sayles
In Theaters:
On DVD: Nov 23, 1999
Cinecom Pictures



as 'Few Clothes' Johnso...

as Elma Radnor

as Danny

as Police Chief Sid Hat...

as Preacher

as C.E. Lively

as Tolbert

as Mrs. Elkins

as Bridey Mae

as Fausto

as Mrs. Knightes

as Rosaria

as Mayor Cabell Testerm...

as Redneck Miner

as Old MIner

as Lee Felts

as Boxcar Guard

as Conductor

as MT Singer

as Injured Black Man

as Boxcar Guard

as Black Miner
Show More Cast

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Critic Reviews for Matewan

All Critics (29) | Top Critics (11)

In the rich umbers of Haskell Wexler's cinematography, Matewan does look great.

Full Review… | March 22, 2013
TIME Magazine
Top Critic

If Sayles's bite were as lethal as his bark, he might have given this a harder edge and a stronger conclusion. But the performances are uniformly fine.

Full Review… | March 22, 2013
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

In its grave clarity, it's as pure and plaintive as a mountain ballad.

March 22, 2013
Boston Globe
Top Critic

Sayles must have meant his movie to stir and provoke, but the self-contained look of it yields something else -- a sense of quaintness, of harmless nostalgia.

Full Review… | March 22, 2013
Chicago Tribune
Top Critic

When this movie stumbles, it stumbles honestly and sympathetically, but, when it succeeds, it makes history sing.

Full Review… | March 22, 2013
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

The movie works the way Westerns have always worked: In clear, simple terms and with straightforward dramatic devices.

Full Review… | March 22, 2013
Orlando Sentinel
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Matewan

An amazingly authentic film with great performances, photography and production design. Sayles work here is stellar, can't wait to read the book.

Ken Stachnik

Super Reviewer

Caught this on late night cable. Fantastic film on all levels. It looks great and has some amazing performances. It is everything that I love about John Sayles. It seems like every movie he makes is a social studies project (not that it's always a good thing) and you always learn about something from his films. I didn't know anything about this event and it made it more riveting. Bob Gunton, Chris Cooper (in his film debut), and James Earl Jones are brilliant.

Tim Sigur

Super Reviewer

A modern classic.

Anthony Valletta

Super Reviewer

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