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"Either this is the most horrific story I've ever heard, or these people are completely crazy." Thus begins Libby, Montana, an incisive and unrelenting portrayal of a small northern mining town's codependent and ultimately tragic 40-year relationship with the company that sustained it.
W.R. Grace made millions from the local vermiculite mine, producing fireproof house insulation among other products. What you learn early in the film is what town residents didn't discover until it was too late—that the vermiculite mined at Libby contains asbestos. The toxic dust affected not only the men who worked at W.R. Grace, but the wives who washed their contaminated clothing and the children who hugged their fathers' dust-covered legs at the end of the workday. You also learn that asbestos-laced insulation from W.R. Grace's Libby operation can be found in as many as 35 million American homes.