Harlan County War
A courageous coal miner's wife overcomes politics, poverty and violence in spearheading a bloody year-long labor strike. This fictional story, set against the historical background of the 1970s Harlan County coal strike, centers around Ruby Kincaid, who despite concern by her husband Silas, forms a picket line with other wives to bolster efforts to close the mine and force labor contract negotiations. Assisted by union organizer Warren Jakopovich, Ruby confronts corrupt political influences in refusing to surrender in the tense, increasingly dangerous battle of wills.
A biased judge forbids the strikers from obstructing the mine entrance or having more than three picketers on the line. Arrested on the picket line with their children in tow, Ruby and the other women strikers are jailed, an incident Jakopovich utilizes to attract media attention. The strike enters its fifth month and picketers begin to dwindle in the cold of winter. With the situation growing desperate, Ruby and Jakopovich begin a grassroots effort to recruit the support of retired miners in the surrounding hill country. Tensions soon erupt into violence. With the outcome of the strike hanging in the balance, a shocking incident brings national attention to the miners' crusade leading to a bittersweet victory for them and their families.