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Interesting concept, shoddy execution

4/10
Author: Thomas (filmreviews@web.de) from Berlin, Germany
16 October 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Let me start by saying I went into this film having no idea what exactly slow food was. I left the theater being not entirely sure either. I think it's supposed to be everything that's not fast food!? The topic interested me because I believe everybody should think about his nutrition way more than most people do these days. I stopped eating meat years ago and never got to regret it. However, I almost regret having watched this documentary here. The first at least 30 minutes, I really wasn't sure what was happening. There were almost no food references at all and instead we found out about the political backgrounds in Italy decades ago, how certain left-wing parties scored a great election result in one particular area of Italy, obviously the party that all the Slow Food founders belonged to. Here and there the political aspect was neglected for a minute to show us some music from the members or even from people close to the members like two fat singing twin ladies.

When the film finally started to show what the title suggested, there was not really a lot substance either. Instead of a really adequate examination on slow food, we get to see Carlo Petrini, the main force behind slow food, during a speech which really is more of a comedy show than a presentation. We also see him in meetings with Prince Charles and Mikhail Gorbachev, probably to show us what a significant personality he is. Later on, we find out how one of the founders had died and everything before was so uninteresting that I had no idea who this even was. The film goes on with Pedrini in an African village (cliché alert) and on campus. As a whole, it really felt more of a documentary on Pedrini's life than on the issue of slow food unfortunately, even if both is inevitably closely-connected of course.

Now, finally about the concept of slow food, it sure is an interesting one, but its chances were summarized pretty nicely during an interview by one of the protagonists: You can't win a revolution without politics. As long as the economy is down and fast food is cheap and makes your hunger go away quickly, people will always consume it in huge quantities. The only path to a healthier nutrition is a healthier purse. And just like people's awareness what they stuff into their mouths leaves a lot to be desired, so does this documentary. The only thing I really took from it, is that the "Internationale" is still such a nice tune after all these years.

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An interesting film about a sparking Italian politician, who industrialized the protection of local gastronomic values.

9/10
Author: mgador from Hungary
26 July 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I've seen the film at the CinemaTavolara movie fiesta in Sardegna, Italy. It is about the life and carrier of Carlo Petrini and his undoubtedly devotion to "il cibo", the food, but peculiarly to slow food. In the '70s when the fast food chains stretched over their tentacles into Europe and the world out of the USA, lots of people started losing his connection of traditional meals, preferring the quick and not too healthy hamburgers and others instead of sitting down and doing the ritual of eating. Carlo Petrini, the emblematic figure of the Italian socialists, took the problem seriously and fought against it in articles, speeches and other forms until he arrived to form the Slow Food Movement which is helping in and embracing farmers in about 140 countries around the world to grow and sell their products to customers. This film is a perfect interpretation of the hard work what Carlo Petrini and his co-workers and successors are doing under the umbrella of the movement.

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