Super Size Me: An Analysis

955 words - 4 pages

The documentary Super Size Me, produced by Morgan Spurlock, is a film which aims to frighten its viewers into adopting a more healthy lifestyle. Super Size Me uses techniques which attempt to shock the viewer- showing them the devastating effects that consuming nothing but fast food (in the case of the documentary, food purchased from McDonalds) for 30 days has upon the physical and mental health of the previously healthy Morgan Spurlock, as well as highlighting some of the practices of the fast food companies which many people would consider to be highly unethical (such as the cultivation of genetically modified chickens- although this practice is not entirely uncommon to other food companies).Super Size Me is a film aimed toward no particular race, age or sect. It is a film aimed squarely at a target audience defined by the larger-than-average circumference of their waistbands, and their propensity to consume fast food more regularly than is recommended by health experts. The members of the target audience share one common bond; they are in denial about how dangerous consuming fast food on a regular basis can be. Super Size Me challenges their preconceived notions about the food industry by allowing them to witness visually, the changes which Morgan Spurlock undergoes when he partakes in what his doctor dubs a '30 day McDonalds binge'. It would be foolish to assume that the audience has no idea that fast food can be harmful before viewing the film, however, the film forces viewers to confront the issue in a very real way- watching a man quite literally wage war on his state of health. Super Size Me dredges up the viewpoints that can so easily be swept under the rug whilst standing at the counter of a fast food joint and demonstrates them in a way which is unlikely to leave the minds of the viewers for quite a while.Super Size Me represents the American people in a way which is voiced by people throughout the world; as being notoriously ignorant. In the case of the film, the ignorance is in regards to nutrition. This is demonstrated by interviews- asking people on the street simple nutrition facts such as the definition of a calorie, or how often they consume fast food (a question which provokes an interesting response and possibly some unfair racial stereotyping on Spurlock's part, in regards to an interview with two African American teenagers). The American people are shown as having an inadequate knowledge of basic nutrition in order to sustain a healthy diet. This is a technique which forces the audience to think: 'What is a calorie?' 'How often do I eat fast food?' 'Am I taking adequate care of my health?The documentary is one which, from the very beginning, pushes forth its purpose, and Morgan Spurlock's viewpoint. From before he sets...

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