Finger Lakes Environmental Film Festival

Devil Put the Coal in the Ground

Expired April 18, 2022 3:59 AM
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”A masterfully conceptualized, deeply moving documentary that fearlessly and empathically dives into the complex entanglements between extraction, coal mining, the opioid epidemic, corporate greed, poverty, public health, and environmental degradations. 


Codirectors Lucas Sabean and Peter Hutchinson’s DEVIL PUT COAL IN THE GROUND focuses on the people and lands of West Virginia. Its web-like structure and gorgeous, carefully hewn cinematography rejects the voices of outside experts and instead makes space for the voices and resilience of everyday people living through these multiple crises, a searing history from below.”

—Patricia Zimmermann, Director, Finger Lakes 

Uniquely structured upon the personal storytelling of native West Virginians, Devil Put The Coal In The Ground is a meditation on the suffering and devastation brought on by the coal industry and it’s decline. From the realities of a crumbling economy, to the ravages of the opioid epidemic, to the irreparable environmental damage and its tragic impact on human health – the film is a cautionary tale of unfettered corporate power, and an elegy to a vanishing Appalachia.
  • Runtime
    80 minutes
  • Director
    Peter D. Hutchison, Lucas Sabean