I watched this documentary a few nights ago and was struck by how solemn and gaunt the entire production is. I’m sure that was the intent of the film makers, but it really is more like a video tour of an extended series of factories than anything you’d normally associate with food and/or other things you could imagine yourself wanting to eat.
It’s sort of a given that the portions covering the factory farming of animals are going to be bleak, but the whole thing is depressing as shit and works as intended on me when I start thinking that I should stop eating processed foods entirely.
The part that isn’t important and doesn’t require anti-depressants to consider closely is that these scenes of agri-industrial tedium and despair somewhat demystify the idea of industrial food production and what the slaughter of animals in a production facility actually looks like. The only living things terrified in those parts of the film are the animals being slaughtered. All of the humans working on the slaughter lines look like they’re completely absent from the proceedings which completely makes sense if your job requires that you insure a pile of entrails makes its way into the correct chute a few hundred times a day.
Despite them being an integral part of the machinery of near-automated cruelty and death on a massive scale I cannot help but empathize with the people working these shitty and brutal jobs. What do you eat after a day spent hosing constantly dripping blood from concrete floors? What do animals and people outside your workplace mean to you after you’ve done that daily for year after year? The documentary doesn’t answer those questions or intend to. It just clobbers you with image after image of dead eyed people trying to get through another shift while picking produce at top speed in the hot sun or trying to restrain a screaming, bleeding animal so the production line can remain in motion.