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This foodie documentary is passionate enough about its source material to keep you hungry throughout...
Docurama / 92 Minutes / 2012 / Unrated / Street Date: July 16, 2013
“Organic” has become a catch-phrase of the modern age, and the folks followed by director Yung Chang in the documentary The Fruit Hunters are strict adherents to its social and commercial implications. These people love the foods they crave with earnest, gut-level passion, but there’s also a prescient philosophical reasoning behind their quests for taste-bud glory: these aren’t just rich sycophants in the mood for a good meal – they have multiple motivations.
Yet the simple search for exotic fruits is what Chang’s doc gets so right. It’s a movie frequently guilty of being probably more political than it should be, but when it keeps things simple, the focus on nature at the movie’s core is deliciously entrancing (literally, at times). The film takes us from the exotic (deep jungles) to the mundane (a run-of-the-mill farmer’s market) and shows us what it’s like for foodies to truly succumb to their most fantastical journeyman ideas.
Truth be told, The Fruit Hunters is a film about foodies for foodies – that’s certainly the cross-section of the movie-renting demographic that will glean the most from Yung Chang’s documentary. For those of us happy with mac and cheese and pre-made microwave nourishment, the movie might seem a little new-agey and hyper-hippie, but honestly, by the end of this thing, even a food-challenged fellow like myself wanted to eat whatever organic fruits these guys were eating.