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Store Wars

In the US, Wal-Mart opens a new mega-store every two business days. This is the story of the impact of discount chain stores on American towns and cities, and on our society as a whole.

STORE WARS follows events in Ashland, VA, over a one-year period, from the first stormy public hearing that galvanizes residents' opposition till the Town Council takes a final vote on the proposed Wal-Mart store. Arguments for the store (tax revenues, low prices, jobs) and against it (destroys small town character, traffic, low-end jobs) are articulated and hotly debated. The cast of characters includes the mayor and Town Council members who will eventually make the decision, Wal-Mart representatives and the 'Pink Flamingos,' the grassroots citizen group opposed to the store.

STORE WARS does not single out Wal-Mart, but rather highlights its position as the icon of the Big Box industry. While offering a critical view of this industry, the film presents fairly all viewpoints on this controversial issue.

STORE WARS is the first film in Micha X. Peled's Globalization Trilogy . Store Wars: When Wal-Mart Comes to Town focuses on consumption in the U.S., and China Blue investigates the manufacturing of the clothes we all consume. Bitter Seeds looks at the raw materials. It goes to India and follows the farmers growing the cotton exported to China's garment factories to be used for the clothes sold in the West. Each film explores a deeper layer of the production-consumption chain.

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