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A Total Ten
This is not CINEMA and it's not ART ... what is, however, is the most fun I've had seeing a film in I can't remember how long ... a totally incredible, wonderful, feel good, and so glad you went experience.
Oh, and the performances were overall excellent ... with some stand-outs - Travolta, Nikki Blonsky, Zac Efron, Queen Latifah, & Michelle Pfeiffer (perenially under-rated on account of "you can't be brilliant and that beautiful?") ... and there were no clunkers - the rest of the cast provided able support to the "stars." The music and the dancing got you bouncing up and down in your seat. And finally, the racial and weight discrimination issues .. the whole "you don't fit our skinny, white, young, & whatever is currently hip stereotypes ... were handled with humor and without being patronized or trivialized - not easy to do in a musical romp. The pride and self-confidence of those who were subject to this discrimination came through as unyielding, unwavering, and solid as a rock ... just like Tracy's hair.
DON"T MISS THIS MOVIE
Fast Food Nation (2006)
Narrative film on the fast food culture in the United States
This is a difficult film to watch if you are as tired as I am of being ashamed of this country. But maybe, as the film itself says, "The bad guys win until they don't." So go and see it.
It's well done, with an excellent cast, a reasonable script, cinematography that is occasionally better than you wish it were, and excellent editing. It's a complex film that sets out to tell a number of stories that it believes are inextricably entwined... and succeeds pretty well in doing that. It deals with a number of themes and threads ... social, political, and "human stories" ... and connects them all to a process we have collectively enabled ... the high jacking of the food we eat as well as the culture and economy that should nurture and sustain us ... and instead leave us fat and still hungry.
Warning to those who love animals, other humans, and may not be sufficiently desensitized to violence and gore .... you will never eat a hamburger again after seeing this film. You might even go on to question chicken. And you will lose any illusions you might have cherished in the past about the extent to which the industry that sells us this crap goes on to affect the lives of people across the Americas.
You may not enjoy watching Fast Food Nation, but you should make the effort to see it. And, you should make it a point to take at least one person you love that has been eating this kind of junk. You will have done your good deed for the day ...