Super Size Me (2004)

The first ever reality-based movie ... everything begins and ends in 30 days!

Morgan Spurlock subjects himself to a diet based only on McDonald's fast food three times a day for thirty days without exercising to try to prove why so many Americans are fat or obese. He submits himself to a complete check-up by three doctors, comparing his weight along the way, resulting in a scary conclusion.

Click here for a video version of this review:
When it first came out in 2004 _Super Size Me_ was a hit due to its simple concept and exposé of the fast food industry, specifically McDonalds. To refresh your memory about this documentary classic, here is the official description:
_Morgan Spurlock subjects himself to a diet based only on McDonald's fast food three times a day for thirty days without exercising to try to prove why so many Americans are fat or obese. He submits himself to a complete check-up by three doctors, comparing his weight along the way, resulting in a scary conclusion._
It is a pretty straightforward documentary, Spurlock films himself eating McDonald's for a month and intercuts this with doctor's visits, information on the fast food industry and McDonald's as a company, and conversations with various health professionals. One of the stand out parts for me was when he paid a visit to a school showed the rubbish the kids were being served, and the reaction of the school administrators was interesting. One tried to justify it and laugh it off, whereas one of the ladies from the kitchen was quite resigned to having to serve up this stuff to the kids. She even says something along the lines of "the kitchen tool we use here the most is a box cutter to open this stuff up". Spurlock doesn't just leave it at that, he shows another school that serves healthy lunches to its students for around the same price, to show that it can be done.
Throughout, Spurlock doesn't put his own spin on things, but relies on the information presented to speak for itself. The physical effects his diet had were quite shocking. It is by far not a scientific experiment or approach, but it does show what effect regular long term consumption of fast food can have on your body. As such it is a useful reminder of information we already know. Heck, we knew it back then, and if anything, the consumption of junk of shows no signs of slowing down.
I enjoyed watching this again, and definitely think its worth checking out if its been a while since you saw it. In fact with a sequel now out, perhaps this is a great time for a second look.

Kathbur Pictures, Samuel Goldwyn Films, The Con, Studio On Hudson by Morgan Spurlock.
Stars: Morgan Spurlock, Daryl Isaacs, Chemeeka Walker, Dania Abu-Rmaileh.

Genres: Documentary

Keywords: experiment diet health junk food food industry fast food mcdonald's restaurant

05/21/2004

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