May 20, 2011, - 7:18 pm

Wknd Box Office: Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, Forks Over Knives, Greatest Movie Ever Sold

By Debbie Schlussel

Ironically, the vegan propaganda documentary was this weekend’s most interesting new flick.

*  “Pirates of the Caribbean:  On Stranger Tides“:   Nothing really objectionable about this movie, but it was just boring, long, messy, and confusing.  Also, I thought a few brief scenes might be kind of scary to young kids at whom Disney is marketing this, despite the PG-13 rating.  And there are some veiled–and not-so-veiled–sexual references and allusions, which would be fine . . . in a pirate movie for adults.  You have the usual action, stunts, special effects, etc.  But I’m not sure why it was in 3-D.  Certainly didn’t need to be.  There was no great 3-D stuff here.

Johnny Depp is back as pirate Captain Jack Sparrow, while some of the dull people are finally gone, including Orlando Bloom and Keira Knightley, who aren’t in this.  Instead, there’s Penelope Cruz, who isn’t much of an improvement.  At the beginning, Sparrow is trying to evade English authorities, including the King and then finds himself on a ship with Cruz, a past girlfriend he deflowered at a nunnery.  She is apparently the daughter of Blackbeard, the pirate captain of the ship to which Depp was kidnapped and put to work.  Blackbeard is old, and like the King of England, some Spaniards and others, they are now seeking the Fountain of Youth.  Even if they find it, they must mix the Fountain’s water with a mermaid’s tear.  But, see, the mermaids are really vampires, and we see them mercilessly biting into and killing pirates trying to get such a tear.

As I said, this movie is fine, but not exciting.  It’s very drawn out and isn’t a tight story or one that’s easily followed or enjoyed.  It’s simply baby-sitting material that isn’t probably for kids younger than 11.  After three installments of the Pirates series–which is, after all, based on an amusement park ride–this pirate story is getting old.  This attempt to breathe new life into it is just okay, not spectacular.  Not even close.


Watch the trailer . . .

*  “Forks Over Knives“:  I have mixed feelings about this very interesting documentary that is animal rights propaganda costumed as an educated health report.  There are some good points in it, while many questions remain unanswered.  The movie advocates a vegan diet, though I don’t remember if I even heard that word once in the movie because it has deservedly negative connotations and conjures up images of radicals in cork shoes and black gothwear.  Instead, this movie uses the euphemism, “plant-based diet.” But make no mistake–the people in the movie are likeable. This isn’t Michael Moore in-your-face obnoxious fare. I enjoyed watching it even if I disagreed and questioned it.

For the record, I eat a mostly plant-based diet with very limited inclusion of red meat, chicken and eggs (only very occasionally), but I drink milk and eat yogurt, which, according to this movie, cause all kinds of cancer and degenerative disease because of high levels of casein.  And there are animal-based proteins, such as lutein (found in egg yolks) , and bacteria, such as lactobacillus, from yogurt, that are more difficult to garner from vegetables, fruits, and grains.  The movie didn’t really address this, or the matter of fish, which I also eat (a lot of salmon), and which the participants in a diet featured in this movie, did not.

The movie follows people in poor health who follow a vegan diet as prescribed by two 70-something doctors who are in terrific health. Caldwell Esselstyn, Jr., M.D. and T. Colin Campbell, Ph.D. have done a series of studies, including Campbell’s extensive “China Project,” using data from the Chinese population to account for low levels of cancers in the Chinese population versus much higher levels of cancers in the American people. They concluded that the primary cause is animal fats and proteins.

They have a point, and that’s why I eat less animal protein. But I’m not convinced it’s necessary to cut it out entirely, something even the Chinese didn’t do. I like a good steak once a year, and I love to eat salmon, tuna, and a few other varieties of fish. I probably eat two burgers a year, but it would be tough for me to cut out cereal with milk or an occasional kosher shawarmeh sandwich (which I have maybe twice a year). Chicken soup with matzoh ball–does that really make a person more cancer prone? I thought it was Jewish penicillin, even though I only have it a few times a year. The movie doesn’t address people like me who frequently eat fish and enjoy a very low-fat chicken broth once in a while. I also wondered what role exercise–both aerobic and weight-bearing played–versus no animal protein in reducing disease. The movie doesn’t address that either, though advocating exercise.

The movie makes some interesting points that have been borne out, such as that doctors who make revolutionary claims through their studies and lab work are often ostracized and pilloried by the established medical community. That has frequently happened in cancer research, etc.

But other claims in the movie were questionable and even outright false. We’re told that people in the rest of the world are starving because grain goes to cows so we in the West can eat them. But the starving kid picture they showed doesn’t obscure the reality that the reason many children are starving around the world is that their governments refuse to distribute the grain we send them. Or they simply don’t have capitalist economies, so grain isn’t plentiful because profit is limited and/or seized by government intervention. Companies that grow grain for cattle feed might simply stop growing it if we didn’t eat beef.

A comparison of breast cancer rates in Kenya versus those in the U.S. isn’t a fair comparison. The U.S. has Hispanics and Jews–both of which have a high incidence of the inherited breast-cancer causing gene, BRCA2. Kenya has neither of these nationalities in any significant number. The movie does say–and other scientists have found this–that your lifestyle is a more dominant predictor than genes, regarding how your health will turn out. I believe that. With my family history, I must.

I also didn’t believe the wondrous claims the movie puts forth that, for example, going on a vegan diet will reverse breast cancer, as the movie contends that it did with a marathoner woman who is 58 years old.  I found that an irresponsible presentation that will unnecessarily get up the hopes of some dying people stricken with the disease.

Anytime you see a movie that includes the appearance of the radical PCRM (Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine)–which is basically the Medical Doctors’ arm of PETA–you have to doubt its veracity.  But the point about which a PCRM official appears is definitely an important one:  sunshine on the identities of those at the USDA who formulate the food pyramid and which big agricultural and food companies are paying them.

Yes, it’s probably not a good idea to eat high-calorie, cheese-laden pizza and steaks covered in sauce every meal. But if you vary your diet and eat everything in moderation and get off your butt and get some fresh air on a regular basis, you’ll probably be okay. That’s what my parents taught me, and it–thank G-d–has worked so far. I’ll probably eat even less animal protein after seeing some of the studies in this movie. But I’m not gonna let propaganda push me to become a vegan. Animals were made for human consumption. And, for the foreseeable future, that ain’t gonna change. Nor should it.

Nonetheless, this makes an interesting, engaging presentation, and even though there are holes in it, I recommend seeing it.  But only if you are a critical thinker like I am.  It’s food for thought, and I recommend seeing it, though with a critical eye, and that’s why I must still give it . . .


Watch the trailer . . .

* “The Greatest Movie Ever Sold“: More like the greatest bore and exercise in self-indulgence ever sold by vastly over-rated, far-left, pan-Muslim, pro-Palestinian snake oil salesman Morgan Spurlock. I can sum up this movie in one run-on sentence: Me, Me, Me, Me, Morgan Spurlock, Me, Watch Me Learn Marketing 101, Me, Me, Me, Hey Did You Know Companies Pay Money to Have Products in Movies, Wow, Who Knew, Plastic Surgery Victim Lynda Resnick Who Owns POM Wonderful, Noam Chomsky, Ralph Nader, Boring, Yawnworthy, Me, Me, Me.

Yup, Morgan Spurlock, who has zero ideas, is boring and wants to find ways to get paid millions to make you watch his boring discovery of America, sliced bread, ‘lectricity, and shoes. His last bomb, the boring, Islamo-pandering “Where in the World is Osama Bin Laden?” (read my review), should have been the end of his career. (And now we know the answer to that, which we didn’t get from this creep, Spurlock.) It was the same crap–watch me, me, me, me. Now we have this to add to the Morgan trash can.

Hey, did you know that companies pay millions of dollars to get their products inserted into movies and TV shows? Wow, I never knew, just like I didn’t know there were toilets, cars, and computers. Hey, thanks for the tip, Morgan.

You’ll have to ask billionairess plastic surgery victim Lynda Resnick (owner of Fiji Water and POM Wonderful) why she gave Spurlock at least a million bucks to have her product helm his lefty, waste-of-time movie. She mentions that she’s a “Jewish mother,” but apparently had no problem giving oodles of money to pan-Muslim, anti-Israel Spurlock, who won an award from the unindicted HAMAS terrorism co-conspirator, CAIR Action Network for his propaganda on behalf of Muslims and against Jews and Israel. Do Fiji Water and POM Wonderful sponsor HAMAS? In a way, both of these products now do. Great PR move, Lynda. I suppose she and her companies also endorse the views of anti-Semitic Jew Noam Chomsky and anti-Semitic Ralph Nader, both of whom are prominently embraced by this movie. Resnick declined my request for an interview. Shocker. The chick is a wimp . . . and a sell-out.

I, for one, will never buy Fiji of POM drinks again. I don’t need to fund more Lynda face procedures and Morgan dreck. How ’bout you? Plus I struggled to stay awake during Morgan’s on-air fantasy.

Spurlock, who must have lived on another planet, never heard of Mane and Tail shampoo and was surprised a shampoo markets itself to wash both human and horse hair. Um, Morgan, the ’80s called. They want their fad back. Yup, this was big then, but Spurlock is too ignorant to know . . . or try Google.

Oh, and guess what? Mr. “Supersize Me” was shocked–shocked!–that McDonald’s, Burger King, Coke, and Pepsi didn’t wanna have product placement in this. Gee, I wonder why?

Don’t waste your time on this, unless you ran out of sleeping pills and a sense of the obvious. Like I said, wow, companies pay to have product placement in films? Who knew? Um, everybody.

Morgan Spurlock doesn’t sell anything but con jobs. And he’s no salesman. Just a pimp. Skip this trick.


Watch the trailer . . .

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21 Responses

Debbie… you posted a review of the last movie a few weeks back.

Is it me or have they rescheduled that movie run?

NF: It was re-scheduled in Detroit. DS

NormanF on May 20, 2011 at 7:38 pm

Chinese people are genetically all the same! Clones?

Vegans can get bent. Anyone denying the greatness of pizza (which at least requires real cheese!) is an enemy to mankind.

Chief Boyd Hardy on May 20, 2011 at 9:10 pm

Thanks for the interesting review on the vegan movie. I wish I had the discipline to be a vegan because I am a big-time animal rights person.

I used to really love the PCRM. Of course I heard of them through PETA (whom I detest now). Now, I think people should just eat what they want, but of course I appreciate vegetarians and vegans (as long as I don’t have to hear about their politics).

Here in Boston we have many vegetarian, vegan and raw vegan restaurants. The raw vegan place is so strange and I would go more often if it were NOT so expensive…and pretentious.

Sometimes I work in the most opinionated zipcode in the US (02138) and they have a great vegetarian restaurant that has super yummy food…but you have to put up with the (unhappy)hippies.

When one goes, one can sign this artsy-fartsy book with their comments and suggestions. If it’s not a groovy message on “the life sustaining force of food” it’s filled with complaints, whining and unhappiness! It cracks me up when I read it because CW would say Liberals are hap, hap, happy, but we know they’re the unhappiest mo-fos on the (life sustaining) planet. LOL!

Skunky on May 20, 2011 at 9:21 pm

(I just wanted to again warn the regulars here that there is some freak stealing regular’s handles on this blog. The freak has stole Sean R.’s and Jon Grant’s (as he pits them against one another in his nasty posts).

To protect your handle (and not have it hi-jacked), I posted how to get an avatar (picture) to post on your personal posts on this blog. All you have to do is sign-up with wordpress and and when you sign in here, use the e-mail you used for your accts. @ both places and your avatar will appear. (note:you will have to use that e-mail to have your picture appear.)

I love the NEW avatars of The Rev, Pats and Dr. Dale!)

Skunky on May 20, 2011 at 9:30 pm

Debbie, I am a huge fan but you are dead wrong about meat being bad for you. Read “Good Calories, Bad Calories”. Traditional Eskimos ate no plant foods and were healthy as horses and so were the Masai. Fruits and vegetables are good for you but meat is not bad.

Pauley D on May 20, 2011 at 10:31 pm

Morgan Surlock, the college kid who never grew up. I work for a living yet this guy makes millions creating foolishness for the big screen. He’s never done anything that made sense yet he’s allowed to exist.
I tried to lessen my meat intake because these days we’re unsure about steriods or irradiation used in the processing the end product, its just so difficult to eleminate it out of your life.
Haven’t seen one Jack Sparrow flick yet, just can’t get into it and I like Depp as an actor, but Pirates, forget it.

Anthony on May 20, 2011 at 11:42 pm

@Skunky, Absolutly love Boston, the greatest city in the country I think, and I’ve been to quite a few!

Anthony on May 20, 2011 at 11:44 pm

Sorry Deb, but eating so much fish is bad for you. Tuna and other meaty fishes are extremely high in mercury, and most salmon are farm raised, and contain heavy metals.

Better off with chicken and yes, even beef more often.

JG: I eat limited tuna. I mostly eat wild caught salmon. I did not say why I eat limited chicken and beef. It’s because I hate the smell of raw chicken and beef (it makes me nauseous) and for time reasons. Unless I am cooking for someone else, it is easier and less time to just eat/cook vegetarian. Most important, keeping kosher, anytime I eat meat or chicken, I have to wait 6 hours for dairy, and I hate waiting that long, so it’s easier just not to eat it and not have to wait. Plus, I just mostly lost the taste for chicken and meat on a regular basis. I only like chicken wings and breast anyway, not the rest. DS

Jonathan Grant on May 20, 2011 at 11:53 pm

Was ‘Forks over Knives’ a documentary? Your description made it sound like an incredibly boring movie. Is a Tofurkey a good or bad thing? Couldn’t make out 🙂

One more thing about the Chinese – pork is a popular part of their diet, easily exceeding chicken, but red meats, such as beef or lamb – is not so popular. Of course, it’s not kosher, so I don’t expect any Jews to include it, but despite being a fat rich item, it’s not caused any obesity amongst the Chinese.

But anyway, Debbie, it sounds like you follow a pretty healthy diet.

IP: Tofurkeys are bad. It’s like I gave the movie two turkeys, but used the tofu version, since this movie says “no animal protein.” It was actually an interesting movie, even though I didn’t agree with it. DS

Infidel Pride on May 21, 2011 at 1:41 am

Wasn’t the “China Project” thoroughly debunked by several other scientists as cherry picking numbers and hiding facts to reach a conclusion already preconceived?

Meat and dairy doesn’t hurt anybody. Genetics, exercise, and luck are probably the 3 biggest factors in health. Can only control one of them. That doesn’t sell anything other than exercise though, which isn’t popular with most folks.

pitandpen on May 21, 2011 at 1:48 am

Interesting read all the way around. Personally, I do not eat unclean foods in any way, shape, or form and will not ever again (if I am not fooled by the contents…). From what I have studied, the most dangerous creatures to eat are those that Scripture says to avoid (pig flesh, shell fish, mice, etc…)

I always enjoy reading DS’s work and her opinions as well as many of the regular commentators such as Skunky (I don’t get the handle) and NormanF. Thanks!

PDMac60 on May 21, 2011 at 2:08 am

Mercury levels of fish are not all the same. Typically, larger fish such as swordfish have higher levels than smaller fish. Salmon is one of the lower ones.

In such fish, the health benefits far outweigh the dangers of the minimal levels of mercury, and wild salmon is available throughout the year in metropolitan centers.

Little Al on May 21, 2011 at 7:07 am

From my perspective, it’s all in the GENES.

On one side, grandparents died young, mid-50’s or so, and on the other side, were almost ancient, mid-90s…parents close to long-lived grandparents stats.

So, on Memorial Day, I’ll be enjoying a medium-rare rib-eye on the grill!

Hmmmm, meat…the wonder food.

Dennis on May 21, 2011 at 11:37 am

movie filled with action and stories, colossal film deserves to be watched I love it

achmad jaenudin on May 21, 2011 at 1:54 pm

It’s not really mostly genetics. For instance, the Okinawans who have one of the longest lived populations in the world have a mostly plant based diet with lots of exercise and a strong sense of community, which they attribute to their long life. They don’t suffer a lot of the ailments that old populations in western societies do as well. However when they observe those that immigrate to a western culture such as the US and adopt a high fat westernized diet and high stress culture, their life span is the same as all others adopting the same diet and they come down with the same ailments as well.

kar on May 21, 2011 at 2:28 pm

Debbie I can barely make it through most movie trailers. I don’t know how u do it.

A1 on May 21, 2011 at 8:00 pm

The only Johnny Depp movie I’ve ever seen was “Donnie Brasco”, but it was mainly for Al Pacino.

“Forks Over Knives” would probably put me to sleep mainly because as a diabetic, I should know better about what foods are good and bad. Then I ignore the rules and go for country-fried steak and gravy. Or anything from the Waffle House.

Morgan Who? For Commie-lite agitprop, Michael Moore does it better. Although Spurlock does look like Moore after a massive liposuction session/orgy.

So my verdict this week is… TORRENT.

And Civilization V. Playing as Montezuma, Baby.

The Reverand Jacques on May 21, 2011 at 11:35 pm

It’s very interesting to hear all this food chat. Especially the kosher stuff. I admire the dicipline of those who keep kosher and I was able to see how difficult it is this lent when I cut out snacks. It was humbling (because it’s not just about the noshing, but for religious purposes, keeping one’s word).

Rev, I always know it’s the weekend when I see your anticipation of Torrent! 😀

(I’m hearing a repeat of a weekday show on my XM Radio and that idiot Jerry Rivers (Geraldo Rivera) is on acting like he’s the Zionist extreme, but wanting Israel to give up everything. He’s such an embarrassment. He’s a Jew and has been a news person for decades, but he still caters to the Palestinian cause and acts like if the Jews just trust them enough, it will all work out with a happy ending. He can’t see even with all his experience that it’s like having a sleep-over with Dracula and arriving with your sleeping bag at his castle all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed at sundown. What a tool supreme!!!!)

Skunky on May 22, 2011 at 9:57 am

With milk and milk products, a lot depends on the amount of saturated fat contained in them. Saturated fat, along with trans fat is the major driver of bad (LDL) cholesterol. It is better not to consume very much of such products. Sometimes they can be combined with skim milk or non-fat yogurt, or the non-fat (true, they still contain trace levels of fat) products can be substituted entirely. If substitution is not a viable alternative, they should be taken in moderation.

Little Al on May 22, 2011 at 11:30 am

I’m surprised you don’t “agree” with Forks Over Knives even though you said you’ve cut down on animal-based foods. It’s like watching Jaws and saying you don’t believe sharks are very dangerous, but then turn around and say you won’t be swimming in the ocean anymore.

Look, I HATE PETA as much as the next sane person, and I’ll never tell someone to switch to a plant-based diet by saying, “Oh think of the helpless cows and chickens!” but when experts in their respective fields like Esselstyn and Campbell do years of research to back up their claims, I’m listening. These men aren’t smugly telling everyone to buy their books and they aren’t selling any pills; they’re selling a quick idea that can be summed up in one sentence.

Some quick notes: they absolutely cover whether it’s okay to eat small amounts of meat when they discuss the rats having a 5% protein diet and being fine. And they call it a “plant-based” diet over a “vegan” diet because when you mention vegan, a person may think it’s okay to only eat processed non-meat products like french fries and cereal. When you call it a “plant-based” diet, you’re immediately emphasizing the need for vegetables and fruits.

For the commenters, coming on here and gloating that you eat 3 steaks a day isn’t the right way to look at things. If you’re okay living with an animal-based diet, that’s up to you. No one is forcing you to do anything. But ignoring some pretty convincing data and declaring it to be wrong just because you don’t like the conclusions is a terrible way to go about things.

I decided to do some critical thinking as well in the months leading up to this movie by researching these claims as much as I could. This movie only scratched the surface.

Joe on June 10, 2011 at 6:01 pm

For a better watch Fat Head by Tom Naughton

First time on March 29, 2012 at 9:12 am

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