'Triangle: Remembering the Fire' HBO Documentary Review
Written by: Karen Benardello
While many workers across America today continuously complain about their jobs, they also forgot one important aspect of why their work conditions are safe. The new exclusive HBO documentary ‘Triangle: Remembering the Fire,’ which premiers on Monday, March 25, humbly memorializes the lives of the workers who gave their lives during the fire that broke out at the Triangle Waist Company factory in New York City’s Asch Building nearly 100 years ago. These workers died in vain, as the government and business owners cared more about profits than the safety of those who worked for them.
‘Triangle: Remembering the Fire,’ which was directed by Daphne Pinkerson and is narrated by Tovah Feldshuh, chronicles the events leading up to, during and after the fire, which took place on March 25, 1911. On the top three floors of the 10-story building, 146 workers, many of whom were young immigrant women and girls, died after the fire either burned them or caused them to jump to their deaths from the windows. The fire broke out accidentally after many women demanded better salaries and working conditions in 1909’s infamous “Uprising of the 20,000″ strike. After the government and businesses received complaints and negative press from the public after people found out the fire was preventable, officials began representing the working class, not just the wealthy.
Viewers will definitely connect to the victims and their families in this touching tribute to those who perished in the worst American work-place disaster of the twentieth century. Pinkerson made the right decision to feature interviews with some of the descendants of the victims, including Erica Lansner, the grandneice of the ninth floor forelady Fannie Lansner. Erica showed Fannie’s strength by recounting her selfless effort to escort many of her co-workers to safety before she was killed in the fire.
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