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291 customer reviews

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(Mar 29, 2011)
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Editorial Reviews

Inspiring and rich, INGREDIENTS unearths the roots of the local food movement and digs into the stories of the chefs, farmers and activists transforming our broken food system. This upbeat, beautifully-photographed film introduces us to the verdant farms and pioneering restaurants where good food is produced and served. From innovative farm-to-table programs in Harlem to picturesque sheep farms in Oregon s Willamette Valley, INGREDIENTS shows the heart of an alternative food system healthy, sustainable and tasty.

Through interviews with world-class chefs such as Alice Waters and Greg Higgins and sustainability-minded farmers in Oregon, New York and Ohio, INGREDIENTS weaves an uplifting tale that is equal parts earthy rebellion and mouth-watering homage.

Narrated by Bebe Neuwirth and directed by Robert Bates, INGREDIENTS is a fun, open-minded film that will satiate both veteran slow-food fans and the uninitiated alike.

Bonus Features: Extended Interview with Alice Waters; Slow Food vs. Fast Food; 4 Seasonal Stories

Product Details

  • Actors: Robert Bates
  • Directors: Robert Bates
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Docurama
  • DVD Release Date: March 29, 2011
  • Run Time: 67 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (291 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B004CJQVI0
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #31,558 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

54 of 56 people found the following review helpful By M. Reynard VINE VOICE on August 7, 2011
Format: DVD
I love documentaries on the food movement. I always find them interesting and while there is a lot of hype about it being propaganda at times, I find it all informative. This particular food documentary was in regards to the local food movement.

In search of great ingredients, this documentary gets up close and personal with farmers, chefs, and other movers and shakers in the local food movement. It explores getting people interested in sourcing their food locally. The relationships between the chefs and farmers that coexist to provide seasonal food on a rotating menu and everything sounded fantastic. It also explored introducing school age children to where their food comes from. Several of the people interviewed talked about concerns with the seed industry and the high volume farming that isn't very sustainable and while small local sustainable farm methods are taking hold in the United States. Overall the film was broken up into four parts titled by the seasons and revolving around the different aspects of farming in those seasons.

All the speakers were very informative. They shared information clearly, listed out their beliefs on why they thought the way they did, and gave advice for those looking to join the movement. There were a couple that made things sound like doomsday, which could be alarming, but as with all information, you have to be the final judge and look at the world around you before buying in to anything. The information was good, the method of delivery was all that needed worked on. Don't let that scare you away from this film though, it was overwhelmingly in the positive for most things.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Patricia Gray VINE VOICE on April 17, 2013
Format: Amazon Instant Video
This documentary covers the benefits of sourcing your food locally and tries to squash (pun intended) the notion that you cannot feed yourself or your family with the majority of your food being grown locally. They discuss the fact that local food can often be more expensive, but they also discuss ways that this might improve in the future or ways that you can reduce that pocket bite. The use of farmers markets is encouraged for the majority of the diet and shows how not only families, but restaurants and food banks are able to feed their patrons with local food.

The documentary is centered around Portland, Oregon, but has interviews and features from New York, Ohio, and other places around the US. While the Pacific Northwest is known for it's abundance of food production, the theories presented here can be applied to almost any spot in the United States, and probably several other countries. The format is divided into seasons and discusses the products grown with the farmers during each season, what the farmers do during this time, and then moves on to speak with their consumers about how they use the product they've received.

Beautifully shot documentary with tons of regular folks talking about their love of food and how they hope to make the growing / supplying / eating cycle a more efficient and local system.
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Format: DVD
There is no denying that there is a good message and a big heart behind the documentary "Ingredients." At a mere 67 minutes, the film raises a lot of points about sustainable food and the surrounding issues which have caused the local food movement to grow in importance. However, there is also an element of "preaching to the choir" as well. I don't think many people will view this food revolution as particularly revolutionary. People know that what they put into their bodies in not optimum nutrition. All things being equal, who wouldn't want to eat fresher product with better flavor and quality control? Not everyone has the opportunity to jump on this bandwagon wholeheartedly though. "Ingredients," at a minimum, does allow you to think about and explore the local possibilities available to you--so in its own way, it can make a difference by raising awareness about searching out local options.

The documentary introduces several farms invested in the movement as well as restaurants who embrace the seasonal provisions of these farms. The farming aspect (whether crops or animals) was, for me, the most interesting aspect within the film. On the outskirts of major cities, these areas are often compromised by expanding residential zoning. They provide educational opportunities to local school children as well as oftentimes getting involved in social agendas for those that might not have access to fresh produce. Seeing deliveries to inner-city New York, for example, was surprising and rewarding. The film also provides information from nutritionists who deliver health assessments on eating fresh fare. Nothing surprising here. And chefs tell us we should be buying and cooking the seasonal products--easy to say, I suppose, if you're a professional chef.
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Format: Amazon Instant Video
This movie works well as an introduction to the benefits of locally grown food, the challenges that face young farmers today (as well as the rewards from their endeavors), and the process of food production in the U.S. and abroad in general. Perhaps the most striking notion that is explored is that which I selected for the title of my review. As one person who is interviewed says, "You can pay the farmer, or you can pay the doctor."

They also go on to point out that one in three children born in the U.S. during the year 2000 will go on to develop diabetes, AND this is the first generation that is projected to have a shorter lifespan than that of its parents. I will take them at their word on this- in my daily life, I see a troubling amount of nutritional illiteracy, obesity, and poor health. I hope that watching this documentary might encourage some viewers to eat healthier and make changes that will improve their lives in every way (not only will you be healthier, but you'll be fuller and get to enjoy tastier food, too!), though I would recommend they first start with "Hungry For Change" and "Food Matters".

"Ingredients" can come off as a bit "dry" for most of its duration, but I don't mind this at all. Rather than bombard the viewer with catchy music and flashy visuals as statistics are thrown about willy-nilly (as is the trend in most contemporary documentaries), this one remains very "rooted". I enjoy most documentaries, regardless of the presentation style they choose, but "Ingredients" stands out as one that is particularly sober in its delivery of the material in question.
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