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Fast Food Nation

The wise saying goes, “We eat to live, not live to eat. ” Fast food and junk food are alternative beats of the same heart. But the heart nurtured by fast food we are talking about is not a healthy heart but the day by day deteriorating heart. The statement, ‘that which you eat fast, can not be food; it is poison,’ seems to be a drastic statement. But on going through and analyzing the facts tendered in this essay, and after carefully reviewing the movie, one will notice that this observation borders truth. Eating is an art . It should not be like a football or hockey match, where everything moves fast from the word go.

What you eat is no doubt important; but how you eat what you eat, is more important! Your taste buds have a role in the eating process. Give them their work-share and do not make the pleasurable activity of eating, a mechanical exercise. Food items need to be masticated properly, not just gulped—and have you really applied your thoughts to the quality of fast food, apart from what is advertised by the public relations men of the food-chain restaurants? —these must be the private thoughts of Don Henderson (Greg Kinnear), who works as a marketing executive at Mickey’s Fast Food restaurant chain, home of The Big One, as shown in the movie.

Problems of Don Henderson: He is deputed by the head office in Southern California to Cody, Colorado, on a fact finding mission. Mickey’s burgers are in trouble. Reports are received that they have been contaminated with excrement…repeat excrement! One would normally think that such lavishly furnished and highly advertised establishments need to have excellent, labor-friendly management techniques. Actually, majority of the employees in Mickey’s giant feedlots and slaughter houses are illegal immigrants from Mexico. They are hired on low wages to carry out such thoroughly disgusting jobs.

Don goes ahead with his investigation and that leads him to anti-Mickey’s rancher, Kris Kristofferson, part of the radical green group opposed to the business activities of Mickey’s. The book by Eric Schlosser, Fast Food Nation, was a non-fiction account. It created the awareness in Americans how do they derive their fast food. The film based on this book, exposes the nexus between companies like Mickey’s and the exploitation of illegal immigrants. Don is one of the central characters of the film, but he becomes ‘invisible’ in long stretches of the film—perhaps his secret investigations are carried out too secretly!

After viewing the film, for sure, you have adopted one change in your lifestyle— given up hamburgers for ever. If not now, when will you give it up? To that extent the film does the philanthropic work of a good Non-Governmental Organization. Fast food arrived and its habit spread like an avalanche. Materialistic civilization, industrial and internet revolutions and globalization have profoundly impacted the food industry and consequently the eating styles of people. The movie makes satirical and painful observations about the history of the development of American fast food.

It severely reprimands in its own style the industry for its serious crimes against humanity. Eating is no more part of culture of tradition of America. It has just become a biological function. The movie doesn’t attack the fast food establishment and its products just for the heck of it. It creates a solid base initially for the subsequent well-deserved assault on this devilish industry. What other word suits the industry that is out to destroy humanity in style! It shows concrete, undeniable shocking and mind-boggling examples. It may not do it with the perfection of a scientist.

But if a scientist were to see this movie, he is going to say farewell to fast food, for ever! The movie covers the present set-up and functioning of the fast food industry. It is perhaps the most up-to-date and thought provoking work on the subject. “Recorded Picture Company production “Fast Food Nation”, a character study set in the fast food industry is based on material from the book of the same name written by Eric Schlosser. ”Fast Food Nation”, published in 2001 and a New York Times bestseller, was an incendiary nonfiction exploration of the industry.

” The findings of Don Henderson will guide you to take your decision fast to say ‘No’ to fast food…. Tomorrow never comes; today may be too late, do it just now—give up fast food! Take your decision and implement your very personal, individual program without a moment’s delay. Your stomach is not the dumping ground for the refuse and other waste material! Your fast food items are manufactured in giant organizations that lack human face, chemicals and faces-yes faces-goes into it, the process of slaughter of animals is just horrible and inhuman.

Obesity and other diseases are the direct result of the fast food habit amongst children. Some of the scenes of the movie are too horrid for the children to view. What do they feed the cattle to make them healthy, extract more flesh from slaughter? They are fed dogs, other cows, cats and old newspaper! The working conditions and payments related to the workers in the slaughter houses is enough to rob you of your sleep. How the industry was started with a humble beginning, and how it has doomed the important part for human existence-the food!

The movie has sincerely and ably highlighted the story of the book, and the changes that are necessary from the technical point of view have been done. Going by the expert medical opinion, this observation can be cited strongly against the intake of fast food. “In an interview with Neal Barnard of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, he notes that a typical serving in a fast-food restaurant is loaded with “addicting components. ” For instance, cheese proteins contain mild opiates.

And when a cheeseburger is washed down with a soft drink, you’re adding the addictive powers of sugar combined with caffeine. ”Fast food promoters are training you to become a drug addict! Doesn’t it startle you? The style of then film is social-realist-pastiche. The film shows how burger industry affects all strata of society. Henderson is a newcomer to this industry. What he saw, during his investigations shocks him to the core. He soon realizes that he is part of the dirty politics—that’s what the burger industry of America is. The book and the film can not be compared in absolute terms.

Yet the film has ably captured the themes like methamphetamine addiction, cruelty to animals, corruption in politics, illegal border crossings and the dangers involved in it, artificial additives, etc. Fast food manufacturers and establishments have the hidden agenda to destroy your health. It is the sad state of affairs that we eat on the basis of assurances given in the colorful menus designed by the restaurants and do not apply our mind as for the contents of the preparations. No questions are asked. We just go by the advertisements that kindle curiosity and appeal to our emotion.

“Every day, about one-quarter of American adults eat at fast-food restaurants. Cheap, tasty, and convenient, fast food is loaded with saturated fat and calories, and its low in fiber and nutrients. Thanks in large part to fast food, half of America’s adults and one-quarter of its children are obese, double the rate of a generation ago. ” “Fast Food Nation” is rated R (Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian). It has scenes of sex, violence, drug use and animal slaughter” Conclusion: “Your food is your grave,” said Bernard Shaw.

Critical assessment of two news papers is sufficient for any right thinking person to take an immediate decision in favor of terminating the fast food habit. Total revolutionary changes in the food habits are necessary and for that Nature is the best teacher. In this college of self-education related to your food syllabus, your mind is your principal. Your initiatives are your Professors. Observe Nature. It provides you with right types of fruits and vegetables at the right time. Nature is the perfect teacher as for lessons to maintain perfect health.

Read the critical assessment of the book which appeared in the following newspapers relating to the book. That will give you authentic ideas about the movie as well. ‘Fast Food Nation has lifted the polystyrene lid on the global fast food industry … it could even change the way we eat’ –Observer ‘Not only will it make you think twice before eating your next hamburger … it will also make you think about the fallout that the fast food industry has had on the social and cultural landscape’– The New York Times The script is witty and wherever it concerns politics, the satire is handled well.

The film takes potshots at the corporate executives. Don Anderson has multiple problems. He has appetite for truth at the same time he has to take care about his career and further advancement in the company. “The movie does not neglect the mute, helpless suffering of the cows, but it also acknowledges the status anxiety of the managerial class, the aspirations of the working poor (legal and otherwise) and the frustrations of the dreaming young. It’s a mirror and a portrait, and a movie as necessary and nourishing as your next meal.

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