Super Size Me Morgan Spurlock

Super Size Me Morgan Spurlock
As pop-docs continue their evolution from the sonorous fare of the NFB and approach a left-leaning E! True Hollywood Story, entertainment concerns start to eclipse educational ones. That hasn't entirely happened to Morgan Spurlock's McDonald's eat-a-thon Super Size Me, but it's veering pretty close. The doc's simple premise: inspired by Eric Schlosser's book Fast Food Nation, Spurlock chronicles the effect on his body of eating nothing but McDonald's meals three times a day for 30 days. Just 30 days! By day three he's barfing; by week two his cholesterol has gone up more than 20 times; by week three his liver resembles that of a serious alcoholic, and his doctors beg him to stop. As does his girlfriend (Alex Jamieson, a vegan chef), not just for his health but because of his smell and lack of sexual function. And with Spurlock's engaging personality and can-do everyman spirit, watching him suffer withdrawal symptoms from his burgeoning McD's addiction is truly compelling stuff. The vegetables served with all this meaty goodness are Spurlock's "investigations" into corporate presence in schools and in American culture in general, and they're a little less effective — Michael Moore he's not. Super Size Me is an entertaining hoot, no doubt, but it's the educational equivalent of seeing the movie instead of reading the book. Speaking of which, Spurlock finally tracks down Nation author Schlosser for a deferential DVD interview in which Schlosser is clearly the expert. Deleted scenes (Spurlock alone generated 13 bags of garbage in 30 days) and extra interviews (with the Big Mac "expert," who eats nothing but, yet weighs only 140 pounds by avoiding fries) are simply more of the same, and the film doesn't suffer from their absence. My hopes for the "hilarious" audio commentary with Spurlock and his girlfriend weren't really fulfilled, though she does seem to have forgiven him for this horrible stunt. Hopefully his body will too. But the best DVD addition, "The Smoking Fry," where McDonald's fries don't mould or decompose at all in ten weeks will definitely make you think twice before you want fries with that ever again. (Alliance Atlantis)