Essay Example Comprising the Critique of Supersize Me Documentary

Published: 2022-10-24
Essay Example Comprising the Critique of Supersize Me Documentary
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Law Fast food
Pages: 5
Wordcount: 1241 words
11 min read

Morgan Spurlock an American moviemaker produced a documentary film named "Supersize Me" in 2004 responding to unproductive lawsuits made against one of the biggest fast-food company McDonald's. The film depicts an experiment that Spurlock does with fast food and in the process addressing those Americans who were eating this unhealthy food harming themselves or becoming obese. Spurlock did this experiment for a month where he ate foods from McDonald's only observing how it affected him not only physically but also emotionally. The camera was able to capture all these emotional and physical changes which included chest pain, headache, sexual problems, fatigue, and depression. To make everything professional in the documentary, Spurlock gets three doctors that are a general practitioner, a cardiologist, and a gastroenterologist.

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Nevertheless, the primary idea that the filmmaker revolves around the entire movie is that fast foods are the most significant contributor to obesity in the United States and McDonald's happens to be one of the biggest producers of such foods. In the one month that Spurlock conducts this experiment, he gains about 11 kg since his weight at end month is 95kg as compared to the 84kg which he had at the beginning. Though the documentary Supersize Me has some exaggerations, it does manage to present a problem that is deeply rooted in American food eating habits.

Although the Spurlock's documentary had a low budget as compared to many other films, it gained a lot of popularity not only in the United States but also globally. The main reason for this significant recognition is its critical social commentary regarding the problem of obesity that many people are struggling with (Sood 2). Previously, not many films had attempted to highlight this problem let alone conduct a social experiment. Moreover, the documentary does not only feature Spurlock's experience, but it also shows interviews of several experts across different fields among them cooks, lawyers, doctors, gym teachers, and nutritionists to bring in a professional aspect to his investigation. This enables the filmmaker to present valid claims on modern America fast food culture.

Additionally, Spurlock investigates the influence of fast foods not only in adults but also in children. His experiment shows that children know more about McDonald and its foods more than they know other famous people like the presidents (Auman Meathrel and Richardson 122). Considering that many children are increasingly becoming obsess, Spurlock does manage to bring in a valid argument about America toxic culture of fast foods even at a young age.

Another important argument made by Spurlock that I agree with is parent negligence of what their children eat. Spurlock showed that several schools had substituted fast foods with natural foods and this according to him affects the children 's behavior and wellbeing (Sheehan 5). Many people and especially the parents that he interviewed were okay with their children eating fast foods due to their easy access and the belief that children love them. Spurlock attempts to draw the attention of the society to change their perspective on fast foods by using comparative and shock techniques throughout his film (Astrup 5). He calls for parents to take responsibility for their children's health by discouraging them from eating food from McDonalds. Spurlock does make a valid statement since parents have a significant influence on their children's health since they determine what they eat (McDonald et al. 2).

Another critical issue Spurlock raises is regarding increased advertisement of fast food. People tend to believe in what they see, and advertising can influence people's choice of food. McDonald's on its parts says it is not responsible for the decisions people make but on the other hand, it spends billions of dollars advertising different products it offers. Spurlock in his films compares the advertisement budget of healthy food organizations to that of fast foods. The results show that there is a significant difference where the budget of fast foods is significantly higher running into billions of dollar. This means that people will end up buying fast foods due to the influence of these advertisements which never disclose the effects of eating such food. All they do is offer enticing and non-ending discounts meaning more and more people will keep coming back for more.

On the other hand, the healthy food organizations that call for people to eat healthy and beneficial food are not given any airtime. Even though this is not McDonald's fault, the results always leave people more exposed to fast foods. Spurlock manages to show that due to the constant advertisement and lower prices of McDonald food, people always end up making the wrong choices regarding their health. He calls for various educational establishments and the government to look into the issue of fast foods since some companies are making huge profits at the expense of people's health.

Nevertheless, not everybody is convinced by this documentary, and to their defense, the filmmaker does leave some room for criticism. One major criticism is that Spurlock presents a biased viewpoint of America's fast food culture throughout the film. His experiment was only done in one month where he ate fast foods just. However, people do not always eat fast food every day let alone three times a day. Moreover, people also criticized Spurlock for not doing physical exercise saying this could have resulted in the side effects he experienced not the food he ate (Simington 6). All in all, critics of the documentary argue that Spurlock exaggerated the negative impacts that fast foods can bring to a person and does not offer valid solutions.

Despite the criticism made against the film, Spurlock succeeds in producing a movie that question the increasing popularity of fast food and more importantly the lack of response from the government when it comes obesity and unhealthy foods that people eat. People have continuously depended on McDonald's and other companies that offer fast foods for most of their meals, in turn, more and more people end up developing health conditions that were as not as common as they are today. Moreover, Spurlock does show that cooperates such as McDonald are making a lot of money at the expense of the needs and health of ordinary individuals in society.

In conclusion, I agree with most of the issues that Spurlock shows in his 2004 documentary "Supersize Me." Although fast food such as ones offered by McDonald's is tasty and inexpensive, its excessive consumption can be detrimental to a person's well-being both physically and emotionally. The United States have developed into a food culture that heavily depends on fast foods, and even the children are not spared either at home or at school. Although the documentary presents its ideas in an exaggerated manner, it does raise some important issues concerning our perception of fast food and health.

Works Cited

Astrup, Arne. "Super-sized and diabetic by frequent fast-food consumption?." The Lancet 365.9453 (2005): 4-5.

Auman, Heidi J., Catherine E. Meathrel, and Alastair Richardson. "Supersize me: does anthropogenic food change the body condition of Silver Gulls? A comparison between urbanized and remote, non-urbanized areas." Waterbirds 31.1 (2008): 122-126.

McDonald, Andrea E., Lenna Dawkins-Moultin, and Sharon L. McWhinney. "Rural parents' beliefs about healthy eating." Health Education Journal (2018): 0017896918774820.

Sheehan, Mark. "McDonalds in crisis: A comparative analysis in a national organizational context." Competition Forum. Vol. 4. No. 1. American Society for Competitiveness, 2006.

Simington, Maire O. "'Supersize me': and the rest of this fast-food nation." Phi Kappa Phi Forum. Vol. 97. No. 3. National Forum: Phi Kappa Phi Journal, 2017.

Sood, Sumedha. "Weighing the Impact of Super Size Me." Alternet. Np 29 (2004).

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