Cradle Will Rock

Cradle Will Rock is a 1999 American historical drama film written, produced and directed by Tim Robbins. The story fictionalizes the true events that surrounded the development of the 1937 musical The Cradle Will Rock by Marc Blitzstein it adapts history to create an account of the original production, bringing in other stories of the time to produce a social commentary on the role of art and power in the 1930s, particularly amidst the struggles of the labor movement at the time and the corresponding appeal of socialism and communism among many intellectuals, artists and workingclass people in the same period.

The film begins with a long tracking shot focusing on a destitute young woman named Olive Stanton Emily Watson. She is sleeping illegally in a theater, being awakened and kicked out. The shot continues as she slowly walks down the street following the sound of the song Nickel Under My Foot. When she arrives at the source of the music, the camera pans up the side of the building and moves inside where we are introduced to the playwright Marc Blitzstein Hank Azaria, who is attempting to write the songs and put together the musical The Cradle Will Rock. Acting as Blitzsteins consciencementors are a vision of his deceased wife and, later, an imaginary Bertolt Brecht. Brecht was a radical playwright who stressed the importance of breaking down the wall between the audience and actors.The film continues, providing a picture of life in the 1930s, a time when some people wait in endless unemployment lines attempting to get work while others enjoy their wealth, attending parties and purchasing expensive works of art. As the musical nears production, the WPA cuts the budget for the Federal Theatre Project FTP and puts a halt to all new productions. This announcement comes following the House Committee on UnAmerican Activities investigation of many of those involved in the FTP, and of the musical itself, due to its leftist themes concerning labor and union organization. ........

Source: Wikipedia