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On the list of family films that make us really laugh, those by Louis de Funes rank highly. Very French and very 70’s, favourites include Rabbi Jacob, Oscar or La Folie des Grandeurs.There is one I particularly like, called l’Aile ou la cuisse (The Wing and the Thigh), a criticism of processed food (industrie agro-alimentaire), a hilarious parody yet very visionary, and a good introduction to food issues for younger generations.

On this occasion I’d like t to share a list of grown-up films too. There is mounting proof that preservatives, plastics, pesticides, and assorted chemicals in our environment (not to mention radiation, eg from cell phones) are linked to the increasing cancer rates in the developed world. Sadly, I’ve recently heard many cases of mothers or fathers leaving young children behind.  For the first time ever in human history, our children are growing up less healthy than we are.  It’s important that we parents keep that in mind at all times, stay well informed. And I believe we have a responsibility to spread the word to those who don’t have access or exposure to information that’s often obscured by advertising and commercialism. Future generations deserve a better world where their health will be more important to society than the profits of large corporations.

The Corporation – This film likens corporations – defined as “legal persons” – to pathological individuals, and helps explain how and why the human factor weights little in large corporations’ interests, which are powerfully enforced by industrial lobbies.

Food, Inc – How the industrial food chain works. If you were hungry before seeing the movie, this film might just spoil your appetite… For industrial meat, at any rate.

Solutions Locales Pour Desordre Global (Think Global, Act Rural) – There are local and small scale solutions to looming ecological disaster, and we can all be part of it; that’s the message to draw from this otherwise rather depressing movie. Silver lining to dark clouds?

Nos Enfants Nous Accuseront (Our children will accuse us) – How a small town in the South of France organizes its resistance to the problems caused by conventional agriculture

Notre Poison Quotidien – This documentary based on a thorough independent inquiry shows how little we still know about the effects of the chemical cocktail we are exposed to in our everyday life.

La Republique de la Malbouffe – Did you know that only 20% of the restaurants in Paris cook from raw ingredients? The rest is all industrial/prepared food. Shocking, no?

Forks over knives – American documentary  (2011) directed by American independent filmmaker Lee Fulkerson that advocates a low-fat whole-food, plant-based diet as a means of combating a number of diseases. (Thanks Rossellla for bringing it to my attention!).

There are many others in the genre: Le Mystere de la Disparition des Abeilles (on Bee Colony Collapse Disorder), Darwin’s Nightmare (massive perch industrial fishing in Africa), The End of the Line (fisheries in peril), Le Monde Selon Monsanto (a one-sided world!). What film or book most recently opened your eyes to the perils to our health and wellbeing?