I’m starting to think that maybe I’m only able to write blogs when I’ve been to see films. I say that because I’m about to tell you about the film I went to see last night – Our Daily Bread. This German made pause-for-thought details the 21st century foodweb in all it’s bloody gutty glory. Think sharp knives, empty-bellied pigs hanging on hooks and a lot of blood and you should get a fairly accurate image of the finer moments from this film.
There is no soundtrack or narrative, just animals being moved around in various states of mortality. This included cow sex with human help, salmon gutting and the story of milk. Basically it was a sneaky peek into what happens out the back of those big Tesco stores and has no doubt been spawning vegetarians at an alarming rate since 2005 when it was released in Germany.
Here comes the lipstick…
Despite being a firm believer in the ‘vegetarians aren’t quite right’ school of thought, I thought a particularly gruesome scene when pig bellies were sliced open, allowing entrails to spill forth, would be enough to put even the most committed carnivore off its meat. If not that then surely the bit where a cow was cesareaned while fully conscious and upright (subtly yet tightly tied to a metal barrier). And then that bit where the dead and freshly ‘opened’ hanging cow carcass spurts blood and bodily fluid like a projectile vomiting Norovirus victim. For at least five minutes. Alas no. I was ravenous by the end of it, dreaming about the Hamburger Union cheese and bacon burger I’d had the day before. I was clearly born to eat the meat.
Asides from the meaty bloody bits, oh, and the cute little fluffy yellow chicks that get conveyer-belted around at break-feather pace before being tagged, fattened and electrocuted (before being plucked, de-limbed and packaged), the film was actually rather arty. The long, fixed focused shots were simple yet incredibly well-planned, allowing just the right amount of context. A pleasure to watch.
The audience clearly thought so too, as no one walked out. Indeed, one bloke sitting just in front of me, made a few involuntary noises and shoulder movements that I strongly suspected to be laughter-related. Heartless bastard clearly didn’t have a soft spot for those poor little fluffy-wuffy chicks.