Thursday, December 07, 2006

Fast Food Nation, Backwards Hamburger & the Meatrix

Fast Food Nation. Read the book. Haven't seen the movie yet. Have you? Honestly, I was deterred by my all-knowing movie source, Rotten Tomatoes. They gave it 48% tomatoes. You need 60% to be fresh. Too bad, 'cause the book is great.

My pals at Free Range Studios, together with Sustainable Table and have put together two online animated videos to promote the film: The Meatrix II 1/2 and Backwards Hamburger.

The Meatrix II 1/2 is the third in The Meatrix series, a spoof on The Matrix, where Moopheus, Leo, and Chickity fight factory farming evil-doers. In this episode, Leo and Chickity rush to save Moopheus from a processing facility where they witness dangerous working conditions and feces from processed cows' intestines falling into hamburger meat. Blech.

Backwards Hamburger takes us backwards from hamburger to cow with lots of facts and stats mixed in like:
  • Fast food leads the US in low pay jobs while fighting any minimum wage increase.
  • The average fast food meal is shipped 1500 miles. Lots of artificial preservatives keep it ‘fresh.’
  • A typical burger may contain pieces of 1,000 different cows and a little serving of manure.
  • Meatpacking is some of the most dangerous work in America, but pays 24% less than an average factory job.
  • Rushed slaughter means animals are sometimes conscious while being processed.
If you go to the film, consider being part of's Dinner and a Movie campaign. You can download invitations to your organic, locally grown dinner from the site, along with discussion questions to chat about after the film.


  1. Thanks Britt, I think im going back to being a vegitarian now. lol

  2. Have either of you seen the movie?

  3. Anonymous2:36 PM

    Free Range Studios & the Meatrix folks will make MUCH more headway than Fast Food Nation as a movie did, as FFN missed a mass market opportunity to score universal appeal. They could've turned down the volume on the R rated dark-side and blasted a healthier message to youth everywhere. Too bad, cause you're right, the book was great. I blogged about FFN extensively on Shaping Youth, and our partner org, Common Sense Media picked it up (as usual). Now you've given me the idea to viral market the Meatrix updates to kids instead. Perfect way to counter-market junk food, and it aligns with Shaping Youth's "Dare to Compare, A Gross Out Game for Good Nutrition" which we're filming to counter-market next month. As always, you've managed to inspire other 'thought leaders'...As we say at Shaping Youth, it's all about "using the power of media for positive change!" Here's the link to our FFN post:

  4. Anonymous1:59 PM

    Just blogged about Backwards Hamburger, very powerful campaign. Here's Shaping Youth's permalink to our article on viral activism:

  5. Anonymous12:30 AM

    Fast Food has become traditional American Food. No movies can make Americans give up their favourite burgers and fries.

  6. Anonymous2:16 AM

    just watched Fast Food Nation, it's an impactful flick to say the least... earlier today i passed up a sausage mcmuffin because of it. Evidently it is worth passing up fast food for more than health reasons.


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