Through the use of a scientist and some high-tech lab equipment, Ian Cheney and Curtis Ellis realize they are basically made of corn. The two friends descend on an Iowa farm town to grow an acre of America’s most abundant crop and to create a documentary film about farm life, agribusiness and the the food industry’s use of corn in just about everything on the grocery store shelf. The corn Cheney and Ellis grow isn’t really for eating, unless it is refined into corn syrup or milled and fed to cattle, so the pair talk to professors, scientists and insiders to get their perspective on how this impacts American health and lifestyle.
“King Corn” is a little lighthearted, but, although interesting, isn’t very entertaining. Cheney and Ellis are affable and don’t editorialize too much, but don’t have the kind of piss and vinegar needed to drive an “important” documentary. Efforts are made to touch on the complicated issue of farm subsides, agribusiness and the changing landscape of farm life in the heartland, but the two don’t really read deep enough between the rows.
Playing Thursday and Friday at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art; Thursday’s screening will feature a panel discussion from local food and agriculture experts. NR
Slow Food OKC, in association with the OK Fit Kids Coalition, Oklahoma Food Cooperative, Sustainable OKC, deadCENTER Film and OETA will present a special screening of King Corn followed by a panel discussion.
The panel will discuss issues covered in the film: sustainable agriculture, the impact of the farm subsidy program on the production of corn, the impact of low corn prices on obesity and general health, and much more.
Panelists will take questions from the audience and speak from their experience and areas of expertise:Kamala Gamble – Slow Food OKC Co-Founder, Organic Gardener & Chef Anne Roberts – Director, Oklahoma Fit Kids Coalition Jonathan Willner – Professor of Economics, Director of Global Programs, Meinders School of Business, Oklahoma City University Karen Funderburg, Chair of the Nutritional Sciences Dept. at the OU Health Sciences Center Tawni Holmes – Professor of Nutrition, University of Central Oklahoma & Registered Dietitian Robert Waldrop -President, Oklahoma Food Coop Doug Walton – Community Foods Coordinator – Kerr Center for Sustainable Agriculture