Super Size Me
Super Size Me is a 2004 film about the influence of the fast food industry, in which Morgan Spurlock personally explores the consequences on his health of a diet of solely McDonald's food for one month.
- Directed and written by Morgan Spurlock.
- Everything's bigger in America. We've got the biggest cars, the biggest houses, the biggest companies, the biggest food, and finally: the biggest people. America has now become the fattest nation in the world. Congratulations! Nearly 100 million Americans today are either overweight or obese. That's more than 60% of all US adults. Since 1980, the the total number of overweight and obese Americans has doubled. The fattest state in America: Mississippi, where one in four people are obese. Obesity is now second only to smoking as a cause of preventable death in America, with an estimated 400,000 deaths from related illnesses.
- Companies spend billions to make sure that you know their product. In 2001, on direct media advertising, that's radio, television and print, McDonald's spent 1.4 Billion dollars worldwide. On direct media advertising, Pepsi spent more than a billion dollars. To advertise candy, Hershey foods spent a mere 200 million dollars internationally. In its peak year the Five-a-Day Vegetable Campaigns total advertising budget in all media was a lowly 2 million dollars, 100 times less than just the direct media budget of one candy company.
- This is the best part of the day, when I get to be fat, on the bed, with my quart of Coke.
- My body... officially hates me.
- [while consuming a super-sized double quarter-pounder with cheese meal] Now's the time of the meal when you start getting the McStomachache. You start getting the McTummy. You get the McGurgles in there. You get the McBrick, then you get the McStomachache. Right now I've got some McGas that's rockin'. My arms... I feel like I've got some McSweats goin'. My arms got the McTwitches going in here from all the sugar that's going in my body right now. I'm feeling a little McCrazy.
- In the lawsuit against them, McDonald's stated that it is a matter of common knowledge that any processing its foods undertake serve to make them more unhealthier than unprocessed foods. Case in Point: McNuggets. Originally created from chickens too old to lay eggs, McNuggets are now created from chickens with unusually large breasts. They are stripped to the bone, and ground up into a sort of chicken mash, which is then combined with all sorts of additives and preservatives, pressed into familiar shapes, breaded and deep-fryed, freeze-dried, and then shipped to a McDonald's near you. Judge Robert Sweet called them a McFrankenstein creation of various ingredients not utilized by the home cook.
- After six months of deliberation, Judge Robert Sweet dismissed the lawsuit against McDonald's. The big reason? The two girls failed to show that eating McDonald's food was what caused their injuries. Interesting, in only thirty days of eating nothing but McDonald's I gained twenty-four and a half pounds, my liver turned to fat and my cholesterol shot up sixty-five points. My body fat percentage went from eleven to eighteen percent, still below the national average of twenty-two percent for men and thirty percent for women. I nearly doubled my risk of coronary heart disease, making myself twice as likely to have heart failure. I felt depressed and exhaused most of the time, my mood swung on a dime and my sex life was non existent. I craved this food more and more when I ate it, and got massive headaches when I didn't. In my final blood test many of my body functions showed signs of improvement, but the doctors were less than optimistic.
- [voiceover] Still, the impact of this lawsuit is being seen far and wide. School districts in New York, Texas, and San Francisco have banned sugary soft drinks in schools. And all-natural healthy options are popping up everywhere. McDonald's joined right in, sponsoring events that showed how health-conscious they've become, and creating a new line of premium salads. At the same time, however, they also masterminded one of their fattest sandwiches to date: the McGriddle. A pancake-wrapped creation that won my heart in Texas, but can pack as much fat as a Big Mac, and have more sugar than a pack of McDonaldland cookies. In fact, their new premium ranch chicken salad with dressing delivers more calories than a Big Mac and 51 grams of fat, 79% of your daily fat intake. Over the course of my McDiet, I consumed 30 pounds of sugar from their food. That's a pound a day. On top of that, I also took in 12 pounds of fat. Now, I know what you're saying. You're saying nobody's supposed to eat this food three times a day. No wonder all this stuff happened to you. But the scary part is: there are people who eat this food regularly. Some people even eat it every day. So, while my experiment may have been a little extreme, it's not that crazy. But here is a crazy idea: Why not do away with your Super Size options? Who needs 42 ounces of Coke? A half pound of fries? And why not give me a choice besides french fries or french fries? That would be a great start. But why should these companies want to change? Their loyalty isn't to you, it's to the stockholders. The bottom line: They're a business, no matter what they say. And by selling you unhealthy food, they make millions. And no company wants to stop doing that. If this ever-growing paradigm is going to shift, it's up to you. But if you decide to keep living this way, go ahead. Over time, you may find yourself getting as sick as I did. And you may wind up here [emergency room] or here [cemetery]. I guess the big question is, who do you want to see go first? You? Or them?
- [after being again rebuffed for an interview with McDonald's public relations officials, and while holding a Ronald McDonald doll] You'll not talk to anyone and you'll like it that way.
Morgan's girlfriend Alex
- This is gonna be you like, after every meal.
- It's hard for me to watch go through this. I got to tell you, I worry about his health. He's exhausted by the end of the day, just so tired. He gets home really late from work and he gets all jacked up on sugar and caffeine, and then he crashes. And then, when we two have sex, I got to tell you, he's not quite as energetic as he used to be. [laughs] I have to be on top. Otherwise, He, uh...he gets tired easily. I think the saturated fats are starting to impede the blood flow to his penis. And he's having a hard time, you know, getting it up. He does, totally. It's still good, but it's definitely a big difference. There's definitely a difference. I can tell.
- I've got Morgan's detox diet all ready to go. The biggest thing is taking the crap out and putting good stuff in. I'm really focusing on nutrient-dense food. Organic, seaonal, fresh food, making sure that I'm getting as many cleansing vegetables into his diet as possible.
- [first lines]
- Children: A Pizza Hut! A Pizza Hut! Kentucky Fried Chicken and a Pizza Hut! A Pizza Hut! A Pizza Hut! Kentucky Fried Chicken and a Pizza Hut! McDonalds! McDonalds! Kentucky Fried Chicken and a Pizza Hut! McDonalds! McDonalds! Kentucky Fried Chicken and a Pizza Hut! I like food! I like food! Kentucky Fried Chicken and a Pizza Hut! You like food! You like food! Kentucky Fried Chicken and a Pizza Hut!
- Lisa Young, Professor of Nutrition, New York University: Federal Government will define a piece of meat; 3 oz of meat as a sensible portion. And that looks like a deck of cards. [shows a deck of cards] Few people will be able to find this deck of cards if they were served a piece of meat; a steak in a restaurant. It will probably be about 4 or 5 times the size. One typical bagel that one is eating that looks something like this, [shows bagel and points to 5 slices of bread] is going to comprise 5 servings of bread. When fast food companies first opened, they generally introduced one size. For example: one size french fries when McDonald's first opened called fries. That size fries is now called small, medium, large, and super size. That original size is still here it's got about 200 calories. The super size is gonna pack in over 600 calories. When Burger King first opened, they had a 12 ounce small and a 16 ounce large. This 12 ounce is now kiddie. The 16 ounce is now the small. The medium, the 32 and the 42. [shows cup sizes from Burger King, Wendy's and McDonald's] And this is across the board with all fast food restaurants. Cars have introduced larger cup holders to accommodate those huge 7-Eleven double gulps, [shows cup sizes from 7-Eleven] which are 64 oz a half gallon and hold anywhere from 6-800 calories depending on how much ice you put in.
- Morgan Spurlock: A half gallon of soda.
- Lisa Young, Professor of Nutrition, New York University: A half gallon of soda for 1 person. 48 teaspoons of sugar.
- Morgan Spurlock: [to kids] I'm gonna show you some pictures and I want you to tell me who they are.
- Children: OK.
- Morgan Spurlock: [Showing a picture of George Washington] Who's that? [a child shakes his head] You don't know?
- Child: George Washington?
- Morgan Spurlock: Yeah. Who was he?
- Child: He was the 4th president.
- Child: He freed the slaves.
- Child: And he could never tell a lie.
- Morgan Spurlock: [shows another picture to children] Who's that?
- Child: I don't know.
- Child: I don't know.
- Morgan Spurlock: You don't know?
- Child: I don't know.
- Child: George W. Bush?
- Morgan Spurlock: No. That's a good guess though.
- [Shows picture to the camera, and reveals that it's actually a picture of Jesus Christ]
- Morgan Spurlock: Who is this? [shows a picture of the Wendy's girl]
- Child: I don't know.
- Child: Goldilocks?
- Child: Yeah, I forget the name but I think I know.
- Morgan Spurlock: Yeah. Where have you seen her?
- Child: That picture's on the sign.
- Child: Wendy!
- Morgan Spurlock: Nice! [shows picture of Ronald McDonald] Who's that?
- Child: McDonald, Ronald McDonald.
- Child: McDonald!
- Morgan Spurlock: What does he do?
- Child: He helps people at the cash register.
- Child: He works at McDonald's. I love the pancakes and sausage!
- Child: He brings every one of his friends to McDonald's for a Happy Meal.
- Morgan Spurlock: Where have you seen him?
- Child: On television, on the commercials.
- Child: He's the character that made McDonald's, and he does a lot of funny stuff on TV.
- Dr. David Satcher - Former Surgeon General: One of the most disturbing things to me is that in the last 20 to 25 years, we've actually seen a doubling of overweight and obese children and adolescents.
- Morgan Spurlock: And this weight gain has been linked to countless health problems later in life. Such as hypertension, coronary heart disease, stroke, gallbladder disease, osteoarthritis, sleep apnea, respiratory problems, endometrial, breast, prostate and colon cancers, dyslipidemia, steatohepatitis, insulin resistance, asthma, hypouricemia, reproductive hormone abnormalities, polycistic ovarian syndrome, impaired fertility, and adult onset diabetes. In fact, if current trends continue, one out of every three children born in the year 2000 will develop diabetes in their lifetime.
- A film of epic portions.
- The first ever reality-based movie ... everything begins and ends in 30 days!
- Morgan Spurlock - Himself