Still from Coca-Cola Case
Still from Coca-Cola Case

The Coca-Cola Case

by Carmen Garcia
A documentary about Coke and labour rights in the Columbian bottling plants.
2009  ·  1h22m  ·  Canada
English, Spanish
English subs
About the Film

Colombia is the trade union murder capital of the world. Since 2002, more than 470 workers’ leaders have been brutally killed, usually by paramilitaries hired by private companies intent on crushing the unions. Among these unscrupulous corporate brands is the poster boy for American business: Coca-Cola.

Talk to Martin Gil: His brother Isidro was killed at point-blank range while working at the Coca-Cola bottling plant in Carepa, because he was part of a union bargaining unit. Like most violent crimes committed against Colombian union leaders, Gil’s murder went unpunished. However, U.S. lawyers Daniel Kovalik and Terry Collingsworth, as well as activist Ray Rogers, stepped in and launched an ambitious crusade against the behemoth Coca-Cola. In an incredible three-year saga, filmmakers Germán Gutiérrez and Carmen Garcia follow these heroes in a legal game of cat and mouse.

From Bogotá to New York, Guatemala to Atlanta, Washington to Canada, The Coca-Cola Case maintains the suspense of a hard-fought struggle. The lawyers filed several cases at the U.S. federal court against Cola-Cola for murder, abduction and torture committed in Colombia and Guatemala. Thanks to activist Ray Rogers, they also attacked the brand image of the Atlanta-based giant, with the devastating campaign Stop Killer Coke!, causing dozens of U.S. colleges and universities to boycott the drink. Still the company would not give up. After five years of haggling, will the lawyers get justice? In the end, they reach a settlement of sorts, but what will the victims choose – cash, or power and integrity?

THE COCA COLA CASE screened throughout the CP Network between winter and spring 2010 as part of The Coca Cola Case Film Tour, co-organized the the NFB.

Upcoming Screenings

Stay tuned for upcoming screenings!

Elric Robichon
Ricardo Restrepo
SODEC - Société de développement des entreprises culturelles, Québec Téléfilm Canada Canada and SBS Australia
Sound Editor
Germán Gutiérrez and François Senneville
Soundtrack Composer
Olivier Alary
Germán Gutiérrez
Carmen Garcia
Original idea and research
Germán Gutiérrez
Film Related
About the Director

Carmen Garcia

Carmen Garcia

Carmen Garcia grew up in Paris, where she studied humanities and was a member of an amateur theater group. After arriving to Montreal in 1973, she worked in the field of journalism and publishing while she pursued an education in translation and communications.
Since 1983, Garcia has produced documentary films, working simultaneously as a producer, researcher, and screenwriter; taking on the additional role of film director in 1993.

From 2001-2002, she temporarily switched focus to work as an analyst for Telefilm Canada. However, Garcia returned to the field of film production in 2003, where she has continued to challenge herself ever since.

Other films by Carmen Garcia