Food Inc. Review
By David Kempler
Food For Thought
Ever wonder where your food really comes from, what it goes through before it hits your local supermarket, bodega, restaurant or fast food joint? Me neither but director Robert Kenner is on a mission of titanic proportions, at least to him, in order to straighten out society and our gastrointestinal tracts.
Kenner takes us through the mass production of our foodstuffs and how this production and delivery system has evolved over the last fifty years. His conclusion is that corporations have taken over and pushed out the iconic American farmer, relegating him to a place where he makes an average of 18,000 dollars a year, at least that's how much the average person who runs a chicken farm is pulling in.
What I thought was going to turn into a mass lynching of the beef industry by some crazed Vegan maniacs instead is an indictment of yet another example of government being co-opted by conglomerates bent on pushing out the little guy and not giving a hoot about the quality of food that eventually ends up on our plates. I don't really believe that Vegans are maniacs, it's just that sometimes their spokespeople seem to have that frizzy hair flying everywhere look.
The point here isn't that beef is bad, or that vegetables and fruits are good, it's that everything is bad and we have the power to fix what's ailing us. In fact, one of the heroes of Food, Inc. is a small farmer who avoids using the tainted new methods, running against the grain of the rest of American agriculture, even while we watch him slaughtering chickens.
"Food, Inc." is not for the squeamish. There are some truly sickening scenes of animal abuse and butchery but to the director's credit, these moments are few and far between. However, there is a major problem with "Food, Inc." The material is powerful but it drags terribly at times. Scenes are too long and presented almost like a bad elementary school production. There is easily a half hour worth of film that could have been cut here. The final product stops and starts. At times it is awfully powerful. At other times it is sleep-inducing. Whether you enjoy this may be totally determined by your attitude going in but better hurry if you want to see it because it will disappear from your local theater even faster than fast food passes through your digestive system.