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This film is
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Our Daily Bread

Filmmaker : Nikolaus Geyrhalter Austria, 2005 PRODUCTION : Nikolaus Geyrhalter Filmproduktion
92'
No dialogue

About this film

Synopsis

For two years, Nikolaus Geyrhalter has placed his camera at the heart of the largest European agricultural groups, and filmed the workers, the places and the different production processes. The result is a human epic that questions and intimately involves each spectator.

Tënk's opinion

Making history on the topic of “nature’s economy”, the science historian Donald Worster observed in the late 1970s that the so-called “imperial” approach to nature had beaten out the “Arcadian¹”. The latter approach, one we can see emblematically in the 18th-century writings of Carl von Linné and Gilbert White, placed humans as subjects in nature, considering them to be imbued with it, one species among many others. As any rational animal, they were awestruck by nature, contemplating it as a work of God. For proponents of an imperial approach, used to fuel agrarian capitalism, monoculture and the genetic modification of living things, God isn’t absent, but playing a very different role, one of a guarantor. It is in his name that human subjects claim to be authorized to perfect his works. As they were “made in the image and the likeness of God”, they have, just as he does, the authority to tailor the world, complete his unfinished work as it was left on the vine. They make use of nature as they wish, mistreat it, hollow it out, suck the life from it to their own profit. These are acts of war. With no voiceover, letting the hard truths speak for themselves, Our Daily Bread speaks to the fulfilment of this ideology in a universe whose machinations triumph over the living, to deadly ends.

¹Donald Worster, Nature’s Economy. A History of Ecological Ideas, Cambridge university press, 1977.

Alain Deneault
Philosopher

Filmmaker

Nikolaus Geyrhalter

Nikolaus Geyrhalter was born in 1972 in Vienna, Austria. As a documentary filmmaker and committed photographer, he deals with current events in a very personal and unusual way. He deals with issues such as ecology, economy and politics. From film to film (Elsewhere in 2001; Pripyat in 1999; The Year After Dayton in 1997), he weaves a strong and singular body of work. Our Daily Bread, about the food industry, was released in France in 2007 and was very well received.