What: Private Screening of Forks Over Knives
Where: Santa Monica, Calif.
When: May 6, 2010
Why: View an advanced-screening of upcoming diet doc
The Scoop: This fall, look for the excellent documentary Forks Over Knives, a feature-length film centered around the work and careers of Drs. T. Colin Campbell and Caldwell Esselstyn, two giants in their respective fields of nutrition and medicine. Colleen and I attended a special VegNews screening hosted by the film's creator, Brian Wendel, who envisioned the film as "the most effective way of bringing this message to a broad audience" after reading Dr. Campbell's seminal book The China Study two years ago.
We had the opportunity to screen the movie with writer/director Lee Fulkerson—who turned vegan while making the film and has since lost 60 pounds—as well as Dr. Matthew Lederman, co-author of Keep it Simple, Keep it Whole and one of the many MDs featured in FOK. The (currently) 96-minute movie—filmed in the US, Canada, and China—spells out, sometimes in fairly graphic detail, the myriad health problems with the Standard America Diet. Through interviews with a dozen leading health and nutritional professionals, from Neal Barnard to Pam Popper; award-winning caliber writing and narration from Fulkerson; plus a sprinkling of Grade-A graphics and historical footage, the message that the SAD is destroying our individual—and increasingly, global—health is delivered quite convincingly.
FOK also follows several people, including Fulkerson, who willingly subject themselves to Lederman's plant-based, whole-food regimen (and all whom achieve wonderful results, of course) and also checks in with various Cleveland Clinic patients of Dr. Esselstyn's who reversed their advanced heart disease without surgery after being left for dead by the traditional medical community.
When approached by the veg-curious for an explanation of your lifestyle change, first determine their motivation. If it's ethics or animals, suggest they watch Earthlings. If being green is their raison d'etre, they can rent Food, Inc. Come this fall, those who have decided that the SAD is making them, well, sad, will no longer have an excuse: just get 'em to watch Forks Over Knives. The triad is complete.
To watch the trailer for Forks Over Knives, click here.