A Film By Robbie Leppzer
86 minutes (original version)
52 minutes (abridged version)
POWER STRUGGLE chronicles a rare victory of grassroots activists - a successful citizens’ effort to protect the environment by shutting down an aging nuclear power plant in Vermont.
A timely inspiring story of democracy in action, the climate justice movement, and the power of citizens’ voices against big moneyed interests.
POWER STRUGGLE is excellent for catalyzing classroom and community discussions about what ordinary citizens can do to affect change.
Available in 86-minute and 52-minute versions on DVD, Blu-ray, and digital streaming and download from Turning Tide Productions (PowerStruggleMovie.com), New Day Films (newday.com/film/power-struggle) and Kanopy (kanopy.com/product/power-struggle).
POWER STRUGGLE is a compelling story that gives audiences hope that grassroots activism can be effective at bringing about positive social change in the world.
Filmed over five years, this feature-length documentary portrays the heated political battle to close the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant, located on the banks of the Connecticut River in southern Vermont.
POWER STRUGGLE follows the unfolding drama as citizen activists and elected state officials—alarmed at increasing safety violations—take on the federal government and one of the biggest power companies in the United States and eventually win.
The film captures perspectives on all sides of the controversy, including from local residents both for and against nuclear power, elected officials (including U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders and Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin), nuclear engineer Arnie Gundersen, a Vermont Yankee spokesperson, federal nuclear regulators, and the legendary activist Frances Crowe.
POWER STRUGGLE puts nuclear power and the long-term hazards of radioactive waste on the radar screen for current debates about environmental protection and the ethical impact of technology on our society. It is one of the only films that links nuclear power and the climate justice movement.
POWER STRUGGLE is excellent for catalyzing classroom and community discussions about grassroots democracy in action and what ordinary citizens can do to affect change.
Directed and produced by Robbie Leppzer and Turning Tide Productions based in Wendell, MA, in association with NHK (Japan Broadcasting Corporation).
Original music composed and performed by John Sheldon (JohnSheldon.com)
Running Time: 86 minutes. (Also available in a 52-minute version.)
“POWER STRUGGLE is the remarkable story about how people power overcame corporate power and government cover-ups to finally shut down an aging and dangerous nuclear plant. We see how small town citizens were transformed into tenacious environmental activists who triumphed against the odds. POWER STRUGGLE is a hopeful story that reminds us that citizen activism is not just possible, it is essential to saving our endangered planet.”
— David Goodman, best-selling author, journalist and radio host, THE VERMONT CONVERSATION
“POWER STRUGGLE is an effective classroom tool to catalyze discussions, inspire students to think critically about political and corporate power structures, and encourage people to become active change agents in the world. The film is also a compelling primer on persuasive communication by grassroots activists influencing elected officials and public opinion about one of the burning issues of our time.”
— Sut Jhally, Chair, Department of Communication, University of Massachusetts-Amherst; Executive Director, Media Education Foundation
“For more than four decades, filmmaker Robbie Leppzer has been combining a mastery of the craft of storytelling through documentary films with an incisive analysis of how power operates. POWER STRUGGLE is journalism at its best.”
— Robert Jensen, Professor Emeritus of Journalism, University of Texas at Austin
“POWER STRUGGLE should ensure engaging conversations on a number of topics, including the role that citizens can play in a participatory democracy, the fight for a safe and sustainable energy future, and the long-term impact of nuclear technology on our society.”
— Kate Purdie Professor, Department of Visual & Performing Arts, Bennington College
“POWER STRUGGLE can be used in university and high school classrooms to show what it means to organize around a social, political, or environmental issue. I hope this film will be widely used in a broad range of classes that are teaching strategies and methods for policy advocacy, political organizing, and social action.”
— Professor Dr. John Ungerleider, Former Chair of Peacebuilding and Conflict Transformation M.A., School For International Training Graduate Institute; Adjunct Faculty at Brandeis College, Marlboro College, Community College of Vermont