Super Size Me
Hi I am Sam a year 11 Australian English student who is studying film techniques and representation in documentaries and other various texts, this blog will be containing my blog answers to 3 questions regarding the the documentary Super Size Me (2004) which is based on the scary reality of fast food. this documentary is filmed by director Morgan Spurlock and his film crew as he under goes a freaky month long experiment which involves putting his own health on the line to help separate fact from fiction.
Blog 1# How is American society represented in the documentary?
In many movies the stereotype of the typical american person is openly teased and insulted, doughnuts and cops, over patriotic, gun worship, THEY ARE SO FAT, lacking in the brains department, big powerful cars. Super Size Me takes the loudest american stereotypes and throws it at the viewers and proves every aspect of them.
To get started I will be talking about how Morgan has represented american kids in his documentary.
in the opening scene to Super Size Me there is a scene of american school kids singing the fast food song, sure this can't be too bad, but when the message sinks in and you start to realize how clueless these kids really are about fast food, as-well as how happy they are while singing and the fact that more than half of them are severely over weight helps to make this scene absolutely disgusting, but it also sets the mood for the rest of the documentary.
After day ten Morgan visits a few american schools where he observes the kids lunch choices, you guessed it all unhealthy none of the kids had anything remotely healthy to eat and to make it worse all the canteen served was deep fried food and pizza, very cheesy pizza, to top of the fact that almost all american kids are unhealthy Morgan asks one girl if fries was all she was going to have for lunch and the little dummy replied "yea its my veg and calcium intake".
American kids are represented in the previous scenes as clueless and in experienced when it comes to food as-well as largely overweight through the use of many film techniques employed by Morgan and his crew.
American adults are not represented too well in this documentary either and this is obvious from the start, When Morgan is setting the rules for his experiment he makes it blatantly clear that american adults are lazy by limiting himself to 5000 steps per day to try and replicate the average american.
Morgan also accelerates our view and understanding on the american lack of knowledge and health boundaries when he interviews some american people how often they eat fast food, the responses were crazy one man replied with "i don't eat fast food very often once or twice a week".
America also holds many of the worlds most obese states one of which is Houston, they definitely have a problem.
Super Size Me has done a very good job at conveying the American stereotype and representation of american society by pinpointing the main stereotypes and slamming us with info and eye sores on each one, obesity, laziness, love of fast food and many more.
In my blog so far I have talked about how the average person in the Super Sized gun toting country we know as America is represented in this controversial documentary.
An Australian interpretation
Super Size Me can be viewed in many ways but i am going to talk about the Australian view and interpretation of Super Size Me.
because Super Size Me is a documentary based on american society it is followed by an american view but this isn't always so the viewer will always view the text with their own cultural and social ideas so i will be talking about my views on this text from an Australian view point.
an average american person may view this text and think it is a complete lie because he himself does not involve himself with ideas or anything to do with the idea that most Americans are obese, he may see more healthy Americans than fat ones. but my view point is that this documentary is telling the truth about 4 in 5 Americans been obese, because in my social environment i have been subjected to mean racial and cultural slurs about american society, so to me this text is telling the truth.
A viewers background and social links have a big impact on their views of certain items for example i view fast food as a once a year occasion that i will regret after i eat it but someone else may think its healthy everyday food because of their social and educational view.
one thing that really got to me and amazed me in the Super Size Me documentary was how lazy and un-educated all the american kids were about their food, they made bad food choices and they themselves thought that they were making good choices for themselves i blame this on their social relations and family morals.
My view on the health of the american society in this documentary is that most Americans believe that fast food is part of their so called healthy daily diet.
so my interpretation of the american society in conjunction too the Super Size Me text is that all my views on a healthy normal life in Australia are either been stomped or challenged by american society.
Exploring an issue presented in the documentary affecting
Super Size Me is a great documentary because of the way it explains and conveys all the key features and points of the problems discussed directly to the viewers. In this entry i will be talking about one of the issues presented in Super Size Me that i feel is a major issue in society today and not just in America.
Child obesity is a big problem in society today it obesity counts in Australia have almost doubled in recent years with the rise of more fast food franchises. childhood obesity can be caused by many things from parental guidance and family influenced food choices and habits, lack of physical activity, stress eating and many medical problems like diabetes may cause obesity or could be a side affect of obesity.
The topic of childhood obesity is touched on in the documentary Super Size Me. in many scenes, many of which could be quite emotional too some people, one of which is the opening scene to the documentary where a large number of primary school student are all sitting and singing the fast food song with massive smiles, which conveys the message that all these students of which are mostly over weight, have not been educated on the dangers and risks involved with fast food by teacher or even their parents.
All the scenes contained within the Super Size Me text surrounding this matter are carefully constructed to efficiently convey meaning to the audience using video sound and many other techniques but one thing that i found to really connect to the audience and help deliver the content about obesity was by adding something most people care about or cherish in their life and that is children, by directly attacking child obesity Super Size Me has directly connected to the audience and unveiled a very important point.
Childhood obesity is a serious and very real problem in society today it is a disease fuelled by media and constant biased advertisement aimed at kids through the use of relate-able characters and icons also as generations move forward the amount of home cooks drops with the amount of families eating out for meals rises.
the problem of childhood obesity is now been encouraged or should i say unattended by the current lifestyles of most people which is leading to the forever worsening condition of our younger generations sports attendance is dropping, video game sales are going through the roof and junk food companies and fast food venues are thriving.
Fast food is a real problem.