Eating Animals: A Thought-Provoking Documentary

A still from Eating Animals. Courtesy of Sundance Selects. A Sundance Selects release.

Eating Animals is a thought-provoking documentary that will make people think twice about the food they put in their mouth.

Oscar-winning actress Natlie Portman narrates the film, which could double as a horror feature.  Christopher Quinn directs adapts the film from Jonathan Safran Foer’s book of the same name.  To say that the documentary is provocative would be an understatement!  Just as with the book, the film seeks to answer the same question of where do our eggs, meat, and dairy come from.  It isn’t only where they come from but how are they treated?

The answers come by way of interviews with several farmers.  Many of these farmers wish to bring the craft back to how it was before the environment started being polluted.  There are so many industrial complexes that serve as slaughterhouses.  It certainly shouldn’t be that way.  It’s why a film such as Eating Animals is so provocative!  Because of the way our food has been made, it’s put our own health at risk.  Not only this but there’s also the question of how our animals are treated.  I’m not going to go as far as the message that PETA sends.  This is because of how they once desecrated Colonel Harlan Sanders’ grave at Cave Hill Cemetery in my hometown of Louisville, Ky.

There’s a bit of a discussion on the Colonel, including both archival clips and the present-day commercials.  How would Colonel Sanders feel about industrial farming?  After all, he was the man who sold KFC because he simply couldn’t keep up with the demand.  If you’d like to read more about Colonel Sanders, look no further than this 1970 profile in The New Yorker.

“We are the Goliath and nature–in all its forms–is the David,” says Dale Jamieson, a Professor of Environmental Studies and Philosophy at New York University.  Jamieson has written many articles on climate change.  Climate change alone is a serious subject that people need to pay attention to if they haven’t done so already.  This subject isn’t why we’re here but I digress.

While being a vegan or vegetarian is no doubt healthier, I’m not any less likely to change my own dietary habits as a result of the film.  While it’s true that I’m mostly a vegetarian during the week, anything that was born with feathers is likely going to be my dinner or lunch on Shabbas.  If that makes me complicit in all of this, so be it.  I’ll own up to it although I personally hope that the kosher slaughterhouses don’t offer the same kind of inhumane treatment getting served up at others.  For commentary on that matter, I turn it over to the OU and Star-K.

If Eating Animals is able to send a message, it ought to be just how bad industrial farming is for animals.

DIRECTOR:  Christopher Quinn
SCREENWRITERS:  Christopher Quinn and Jonathan Safran Foer
NARRATOR:  Natalie Portman

Following the world premiere at the 2017 Telluride Film Festival, Sundance Selects opened Eating Animals in select theaters on June 15, 2018.

Danielle Solzman

Danielle Solzman is native of Louisville, KY, and holds a BA in Public Relations from Northern Kentucky University and a MA in Media Communications from Webster University. She roots for her beloved Kentucky Wildcats, St. Louis Cardinals, Indianapolis Colts, and Boston Celtics. Living less than a mile away from Wrigley Field in Chicago, she is an active reader (sports/entertainment/history/biographies/select fiction) and involved with the Chicago improv scene. She also sees many movies and reviews them. She has previously written for Redbird Rants, Wildcat Blue Nation, and Hidden Remote/Flicksided. From April 2016 through May 2017, her film reviews can be found on Creators.

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