Documentary 87 September 27, 2013
By Ernest Hardy
As battles over the world's food supply intensify, some tough questions become ever more pressing: Who controls it? Are shortages being created and manipulated, and to what end? Exactly what is in what we are eating? Writer-director Jeremy Seifert addresses those concerns and more in GMO OMG, a documentary that is by turns exasperating, illuminating, and intentionally infuriating. Sparked by his precocious six-year-old son's obsession with seeds, Seifert dives into research on the state of the world's seed supply, which springboards into larger questions about global food sources and who wields power over them. That line of query of course leads straight to the machinations of Monsanto. Seifert (whose approach owes more than a little to Michael Moore) travels the world, talking to activists in Haiti who burned seeds Monsanto donated following 2010's devastating earthquake, scientists in France whose studies suggest horrifying future side-effects from Monsanto products, and finally circling back to the American heartland, where he uncovers sobering data on the state of the American farm industry. Even those who have been paying close attention to these issues are likely to glean some new insight into the various branches of the matter. Unfortunately, Seifert's structure of his film can be groan-inducing, as he introduces many segments with contrived conversations between his (admittedly adorable) children, who often look bored out of their minds as he doles out data and statistics; the effect is to infantilize his audience. When he gets past those setups, the film is fantastic.
Jeremy Seifert Chavannes Jean-Baptiste, Ken Roseboro, Michael Adam, Sammy Junior, III, James Burkholder, Bill Beam, Gene Logsdon, Don Grimes, Jeff Moyer, Mark "Coach" Smallwood Jeremy Seifert Joshua A. Kunau, Elizabeth Kucinich Submarine Deluxe

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