Richard Linklater to direct "Fast Food Nation"

It seems to be a whole new frontier… converting popular non-fiction books into big screen films. I learned last week at Biola that The Purpose-Driven Life is about to become a feature film. (Try and figure THAT out!) Now, word that Richard Linklater (Before Sunset, Waking Life, School of Rock)is taking on this essential work… Fast Food Nation!

What is Fast Food Nation?
Via Coming Soon, here’s the Houghton Mifflin summary:

Are we what we eat? To a degree both engrossing and alarming, the story of fast food is the story of postwar Amerca. Though created by a handful of mavericks, the fast food industry has triggered the homogenization of our society. Fast food has hastened the malling of our landscape, widened the chasm between rich and poor, fueled an epidemic of obesity, and propelled the juggernaut of American cultural imperialism abroad. That’s a lengthy list of charges, but Eric Schlosser makes them stick with an artful mix of first-rate reportage, wry wit, and careful reasoning. Schlosser’s myth-shattering survey stretches from the California subdivisions where the business was born to the industrial corridor along the New Jersey Turnpike where many of fast food’s flavors are concocted. He hangs out with the teenagers who make the restaurants run and communes with those unlucky enough to hold America’s most dangerous job — meatpacker. He travels to Las Vegas for a giddily surreal franchisers’ convention where Mikhail Gorbachev delivers the keynote address. He even ventures to England and Germany to clock the rate at which those countries are becoming fast food nations. Along the way, Schlosser unearths a trove of fascinating, unsettling truths — from the unholy alliance between fast food and Hollywood to the seismic changes the industry has wrought in food production, popular culture, and even real estate. He also uncovers the fast food chains’ efforts to reel in the youngest, most susceptible consumers even while they hone their institutionalized exploitation of teenagers and minorities. Schlosser then turns a critical eye toward the hot topic of globalization — a phenomenon launched by fast food. “Fast Food Nation” is a groundbreaking work of investigation and cultural history that may change the way America thinks about the way it eats.

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  • Anonymous

    Lizz Wright’s Dreaming Wide Awake

    Sam Phillips: I Dreamed I Stopped Dreaming

    Over the Rhine: “We’ll wake up dreaming” from Spark

    … a common theme

    – Adam

  • Peter T Chattaway

    when is that canadian one coming out, Peter?

    “Fall 2005” was the official word, five months ago. It will certainly be playing at least one of the Canadian festivals next month. But two weeks ago I got a release schedule indicating it would not get a general theatrical release until “March, 2006”.

  • Adam Walter

    The fact that The Usual Suspects also made it onto Eggbert’s most-hated list, makes me wonder if Constantine isn’t worth taking a look at after all…

  • jasdye

    am i the only person who doesn’t care for gus van sant?

    i don’t care for that ‘motion-capture’ or whatever that new-fangled technology is from zemeckis. i have a feeling his beowulf might even be freakier than Laimbert’s version. when is that canadian one coming out, Peter?

  • jasdye

    i don’t think it’s about whether or not you agree with his rating or ranting. he has long made it apparent that he doesn’t give a lot of stock to his own ratings – they are about how he feels about the experience of watching the film. he hated waterboy and taste of cherry, for obviously different reasons.

    so the exciting part is watching him expound on a film. sometimes, he thinks too much (and it all amounts to a hill of beans), sometimes not at all. but it’s most fun when he gets into a writing frenzy about a film he doesn’t care for. or, in his words:

    “I hated this movie. Hated hated hated hated hated this movie. Hated it. Hated every simpering stupid vacant audience-insulting moment of it.”

    that’s hilarious!

  • Peter T Chattaway

    But it’s the grunge version of the Christ story, so that makes it hip.

    That’s interesting, cuz Ken Eisner’s review also says, “You could call this The Passion of the Kurt, in which the hero is fried, not flayed.”

    Re: Deadly. The last I heard, its name had been changed to Karla — I’ve been following the controversy at my own blog, the most recent post being here.

  • Anonymous

    Ebert hated The Village that much? I agree with him about a lot of these, but I loved The Village. It’s definitely a movie that elicits strong responses from folks, one way or another.

    -Doug D

  • Rob

    Huh. So… documentary? I’m a little confused. But hey, cool. I’m going to check out this book too!