Fast Food Nation: Film # 9 of Film 365

Thursday 24th March 2011

Director: Richard Linklater
Year: 2006
Stars: Greg Kinnear, Catalina Sandino Moreno, Wilmer Valderrama, Ana Claudia Talancon, Ashley Johnson, Paul Dano, Patricia Arquette, Ethan Hawke, Aaron Himelstein, Avril Lavigne

Well, this was a pleasant surprise. I was expecting a pretty standard documentary about the fast food industry, based on the book of the same name. Not that that would have been a problem - I was expecting it to be relatively interesting.

However, what I got was a fictional movie looking at characters involved in the creation of a "Big One" - the fictional equivalent of a Big Mac, if you like. Fast Food Nation starts in California with a member of the burger company's advertising team having to come to Colorado to investigate the factory. As time goes on, it also follows illegal immigrants from Mexico who end up working at the factory, and an employee of the burger company in Colorado.

For those of you who have read the book, there will be no surprises here. For the most part, however, Fast Food Nation is pretty fascinating. Unfortunately it doesn't have quite enough plot to fill its two hour running time, but the final scenes will leave you thinking about them for days. And a word of warning: I would be very surprised if animals weren't harmed during the making of this movie. But then, you are watching a movie about making burger meat.

Rating: 4 out of 5

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I live in Bristol with my husband Dan (who I married in July 2007), my son Joe (born 2012) and daughter Jess (born 2015). I work at UWE (the University of the West of England) in Bristol as a Research and Open Access Librarian. I'm orginally from Exeter, so moving back to Bristol is a bit like coming home - especially as I studied for my undergraduate degree here (also at UWE). I love travelling and movies, although I get to do a lot less of both since the birth of our children. Although we have still managed to fit in holidays to the Isles of Scilly, Chamonix and a summer in California since Joe was born.