This is one of the most thought provoking films I have seen in a very long time. We Feed the World actually presents a fairly balanced view of the food situation in the world. The balance comes in the last 15 minutes with a very frank direct interview with the former CEO of Nestle, Peter Brabeck. I actually haven't felt compelled to take notes during a film in a very long time. The film is very very European, taking a stong EU view of the world; the US is mostly left out of the conversation.
The DVD menu is perfectly organized - each menu selection could be a good solid one hour discussion about the pros and cons of what was presented. Whether in a classroom or home, this is a film to discuss.
The film tours through wheat farming in Switzerland, a small fisherman in Brittany France, greenhouse tomatoes in Spain, hybrid seeds in Romania, soybeans in Brazil, chickens in Austria, and finally Nestle. Each topic is discussed in around 15 minute segments. There is an interview with a UN reporter on World Hunger that anchors each segment. A lot of statistics or facts are stated. It seems the desired effect is, oh my that is horrible, we should do something about that. However, there is usually a counterpoint when I considered these facts in more depth.
The film is beautifully shot, with excellent pacing. The dialog is well recorded, and there are some really wonderful background outdoor sounds - bugs, birds, and wind blowing through a wheat field. They all lead to an easy to watch film.
The film is not rated, just be warned that at 1:20, there is some pretty graphic views of chickens going to slaughter and just after their throats are cut - it is pretty graphic making you feel like becoming a vegetarian. Sadly, its just a fact of life if we are to eat meat. There is also a double f bomb tossed out by the Pioneer Seed person. The words are said without emotion or emphasis, and said by somebody with a very strong accent - my point, most people won't even hear the words. Otherwise, this is an important film the whole family should view.
I really loved the debate this film set up in my mind. On the one hand, we would all love organically grown heirloom vegetables to go with our free range chicken. But on the other, the world has to be fed, and there just isn't enough space, money or time to feed everyone in exactly that manner. At some point we have to realize, industrial food manufacture is one way huge masses of people can eat. It is better though, to eat what is grown locally whenever possible. Its so worth listening to this debate, discuss the ideas presented in the film. They are not simple black and white issues.
View the film. Ponder the information, do a little research. Discuss what it means. And draw your own conclusions.