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Earth Eats: Real Food, Green Living

5 Must-See Food Documentaries And Short Films

Just in time for the Academy Awards, we've compiled a list of our favorite documentaries and short films about food, farming and sustainability.

fed up movie website

Photo: Fed Up

Fed Up was an official selection at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival.

Each week, Earth Eats will be sharing a comprehensive list of links to food media outlets, including but not limited to film, podcasts, books and blogs.

The first post of this weekly series compiles recent and upcoming documentaries and short films about food. Issues addressed in these films span a broad spectrum, but each represents unique and often personal perspectives into niches of food production, preparation and consumption.

Check out the following links before planning your next movie night!

Cook It Raw

Learn how small-scale food producers tackle the “raw” elements of obtaining and eating food by watching “Cook It Raw.” A prestigious yet peculiar culinary event that aims to connect culture, history, and environmental issues through creative collaboration, “Cook It Raw” sounds enticing. Rather than raw foods, the event and the documentary highlight methods like foraging, hunting, farming, fishing and cooking over open fires; the art of cooking is stripped down to its bare essentials.

The Perennial Plate presents us with only the teaser trailer – the film will be released early 2014 – but continue on over to the event’s official website for a glimpse at both American and international projects.

Dive!

Reducing food waste is a hot topic in conversation surrounding food, but many remain guarded about using someone else’s “trash” as a means of sustenance. If you have never dabbled into what some call urban foraging, the trailer for “Dive!”, a film by Jeremy Seifert, could certainly be an eye-opener.

Farmed And Dangerous

Recently the fast food chain Chipotle released ads that call into question industrial agriculture and factory farming, but now a web series by the brand approaches the serious subject of the food system with a satirical gaze.

The first episode of the comedy “Farmed And Dangerous,” titled Oiling the Food Chain, is up for viewing.

Fed Up

Stephanie Soechtig’s documentary “Fed Up” places America’s addiction to unhealthy foods right under our noses.

The film looks at big food companies’ connections to childhood obesity, targets food policy such as the Get Moving campaign, and reveals fallacies between consumers and the weight-loss industry.

Final Straw

A story about nature, food, and happiness, “Final Straw” emphasizes the importance of interconnections amongst people, food and the environment. The film, coming spring 2014, documents the work of small-scale farmers across the globe, from San Francisco to Japan to Korea. From these farmers, who promote self-sufficiency, community and simpler methods of subsistence, we learn that the key to good food and a good life is creating healthy relationships between humans and their environment.

More: The Real Food Media project has compiled 10 short films that aim to spread the message of sustainable farming and mindful living. The trailers range in subject from beekeeping to oregano farming, from recycling to preserving seeds. Vote for your favorite by Sunday, March 2 at 11:59PM EST!

Sarah Ostaszewski

Sarah Ostaszewski is a student of anthropology and fine arts at Indiana University. She dreams of fresh summer tomatoes from her family's garden, and she loves tasting unique ingredients, learning culinary histories, and tracing foods back to their roots.

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