Parents' Guide to

Food, Inc.

By Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Important but disturbing docu about food biz.

Movie PG 2009 94 minutes
Food, Inc. Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 12+

Based on 11 parent reviews

age 13+

Good, but needs to be addressed properly to children.

First off, I’d like to say that I saw this film in my 8th grade year of English class during our Unit on the reading of “ The Omnivore’s Dilemma “ by Michael Pollan. I, at the time being 13 years old as a female who has diagnosed Aspergers Syndrome (ASD) and a natural inclination towards hyperfixations and the occasional unfortunate sensory overload. While the film itself was brilliantly made— much like the book— I found it absolutely terrifying and traumatic. The imagery alone made me sick to my stomach and dare I admit, furious about my country and it’s capitalistic moralities. It also didn’t help that I was severely emetophobic and associated the concept of vomiting with a death sentence. For this reason, I developed my first diagnostic Anxiety disorder and began experiencing panic attacks. After years of being on ADHD meds had already made weight gain a struggle for me, it began to worsen with a newfound fear concerning the origins of the food I had on my plate— to a point where my parents had to force me to eat. I can remember years of road trips where I had to be dragged inside a McDonald’s by my hungry folks— often in tears and always against my will. I knew now what was lurking in those Happy Meal boxes… and it was outrageous and inhuman. To this day as a 20 year-old I still refuse to watch it. I still get into arguments with my father at the supermarket when he refuses to purchase pasture-raised organic beef… and I have years of traumatizing panic attacks behind me that hindered my independence severely into adulthood. I look back on that 8th grade experience and encounter with this film in disdain for the hectic experiences it has caused me— much like a victim of PTSD having flashbacks. It was a necessary awakening to the awful people in this world who seek money over health and wellbeing of others— but one that was presented perhaps too soon. Against my will and understanding of where it would take me. In short? Feel free to show it to your children. Let them know the truth behind their “happy” meals and “delicious” pastries… but do so knowing very well what consequences it may cause for you parents out there and your child as it did with myself and my own.

This title has:

Great messages
Too much violence
Too much consumerism
2 people found this helpful.
age 12+

good but sad at some parts

Your kid will never eat anything again. The killing of animals is very sad thought

This title has:

Too much violence
1 person found this helpful.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (11 ):
Kids say (21 ):

It's a good thing that most theater concession stands don't sell cheeseburgers and chicken fingers, or audiences would want to hurl them -- in either sense -- after seeing this movie. Kenner provides a comprehensive look at how food goes from "seed to supermarket" and how the driving force isn't so much feeding the world but filling the corporate coffers of a select group of controlling companies. Anyone who's read either Pollan's or Schlosser's work (and their influence as producers/consultants is obviously influential) may know a lot of the material, but the vast majority of Americans are in the dark, which seems to be how some in the food industry would prefer it (not that any of the companies agreed to be interviewed for the film).

Food, Inc. offers plenty of horror stories: how big companies are keeping farmers down, how animals are treated cruelly so we can have bigger boneless chicken breasts and fast-food dollar menus, and even how the USDA seems to care more about the companies it's supposed to regulate than the population it's supposed to protect. The segments showing the animals can be terrifying, and the one about the working-class family that eats fast food because it's so much cheaper than healthier options is heartbreaking. But surprisingly, the overall message of the documentary is one of hope -- how every dollar we spend on food makes a difference, not just to our immediate families, but to the world.

Movie Details

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