Sunday, April 15, 2007

Fast Food Renationalization Project

Every now and then you find a movie on the wall of the video store that you were one excited to see but had somehow forgotten. The title alone is enough to evoke an instant guarantee of a night of pure entertainment; such that on the way home you would practice your interviews for when they asked how you got involved with the film. I would tell the press that I knew /Fast Food Nation/ was another quick investment from someone in Hollywood looking to make a couple bucks -- but /Fast Food Nation/-- the Opportunity to work on a movie adaptation of such an important book is a rare chance in a lifetime.

What really sold me on picking up the movie was a conversation my daughter and I had the day before. Apparently she has reached the point in a young girl's life where the consumption of meat is called into question. The stories of animal parts and other crap falling into the low quality meat served as the foundation to her wanting to explore the vegetable side of the plate. Her only reservation was the fact that, aside from pickles and potato chips, she didn't really know what other options were available. My hopes were that providing an all-star cast of Hollywood liberalism was a good way to help her begin to explore.

When we finally got situated we started by watching some of the cartoons in the DVD extras. These were wonderful little PETA-lite commercials with cows and pigs acting out roles from the Matrix. They called it /The Meatrix/ and tied the three shorts together with a website to help kids learn more about where the meat comes from. The last cartoon didn't have so much to do with Morpheus but did involve a lot more intestines being pulled out of cute little animals than I would have preferred my little girl watching. Then we got to the movie and I realized that those little critters didn't hold a candle to what was in store.


/Fast Food Nation/ can best be described as Mexican PETA Porn filled with plenty of blood and drugs and hamburgers. The wonderful little tidbits of liberal one-liners were drowned out by the cameras attention to the lusty little immigrants. The big names like Bruce Willis and Kris Kristofferson were but momentary flashes of greatness before a grand slaughterhouse finale which led to the main character going right back to working for the man. Ultimately I would have thought the entire movie to be a complete loss until I saw the making of the film.

I believe that the real film may actually be on the cutting room floor of an underpaid editor who decided he wasn't making enough money to finish the job. If this is the case we might have the opportunity to petition Richard Linklater to post the full movie on BitTorrent. Movie editors from around the country could submit different variations of the final movie -- some dry, witty humor or bloody gory mutilation -- whatever the director feels represents his message to the audience. A certain 911 exposure film did the same thing recently. It's the least he could do after introducing my daughter to the wilder side of Mexico.

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