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Students slice and dice for a better future in ‘Pressure Cooker’ documentary

With a supervisor who doesn't mince words and likes to yell, men and women battling over hot stoves for their big chance, and a ticking clock and other on-camera conventions, Pressure Cooker could be mistaken for a prime-time reality show. But it's actually a "real" story about students in the Culinary Arts...

Bringing everyone to the table: A review of “PolyCultures”

A handful of recent movies - most notably "Food, Inc." and "Fresh" - have undoubtedly boosted the number of people with something to say about national food policy. And just as the local foods movement emphasizes supporting local farms and producers, filmmakers are beginning to take a closer look at the...

“Food, Inc.” the book: Picking up where the documentary left off

By Joshua J. Biggley Summer blockbusters are often contrived, schlocky representations of the books on which they are based. But the documentary "Food, Inc.," which drew heavily on the nonfiction bestsellers "The Omnivore's Dilemma" and "Fast Food Nation" for its subject matter, has produced an accompanying...

NPR critique of “Food, Inc” points to important divide

How to reach across the GMO corn rows: A brief segment on NPR reported from Kansas City has the food-politics blogosphere and Twitter kingdom bristling. (La Vida Locavore calls it a "one-sided shallow hit piece," while the Organic Nation blog accuses NPR of pandering to its advertiser, Monsanto.) It's not...

“Dirt”-y movie tells how we’ve sold our soils

The last page of every issue of Edible San Francisco contains this anonymous quotation: "Despite its artistic pretensions and its many accomplishments, humankind owes its existence to a six-inch layer of topsoil and the fact that it rains." One could even go so far and say that most life — plants, birds,...

New documentary “Food Stamped” explores whether you can eat healthy on food stamps

1 in 10 Americans trying to live on $1 per meal: A new documentary called "Food Stamped" follows a couple (a nutrition educator in low-income neighborhoods and her filmmaker husband) as they attempt to eat a healthy, well-balanced diet on a food stamp budget of just a buck a meal. Food justice activists,...

Nicholas Kristof on the “terrific new documentary” “Food, Inc”

Worms can be good protein: "The documentary…'Food, Inc.' offers a powerful and largely persuasive diagnosis of American agriculture," write NY Times columnist Nicholas Kristof in Sunday's paper. "Go see it, but be warned that you may not want to eat for a week afterward." Following a paean to his mother's...

The lesson of ‘less’: Why ‘The End of the Line’ seafood documentary doesn’t go far enough

By Twilight Greenaway I walked out of the screening of “The End of the Line” feeling deeply uneasy. Most of my discomfort had been carefully orchestrated by the film’s director, Rupert Murray, who filled the 80 minutes with straight-talking scientists and image upon image of wild fish being violently...

Who’s afraid of Big Bad Agribiz? Not “Food Inc.” — but eaters and farmers may be

You've most likely heard about "Food, Inc.," the new documentary about the U.S. industrial food system. (Watch trailer, embedded above right.) The buzz for the film is intense, amplified by an aggressive marketing campaign by Participant Media Productions (the people who midwifed "An Inconvenient Truth," to...

Vote! Organic Film Trailer Competition finalists announced

The Organic Summit has announced the 12 finalists for its first annual Organic Film Trailer Competition, and voting is open. Cosponsored by the Organic Farming Research Foundation, the summit is a leadership conference (this year June 3-5 in Washington state) that brings together organic producers and food...

Digest – Blogs, features and snacks: Pesticide perversions, subsidy love, the anti-Pollan

Small-town physician sees effects of Big Ag: an Indiana neonatologist finds that birth defects, including spina bifida, cleft pallet and lip, down syndrome, urogenital abnormalities, and club foot (among others) are more likely to occur in pregnancies that begin between April and July — the time period when...

‘Killer’ movie tells who to charge for the large

"Killer at Large," a new documentary DVD, is a veritable banquet of obesity information, serving up copious facts and personal tales about the American obesity epidemic that threatens to shorten the life span of the current generation of young people. Alas, the movie provides only a dollop of solutions...

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