That Sugar Film manages to be both entertaining and educational; no easy task when you’re spending your runtime lecturing your audience on what they’re putting into their body. Director – and ‘subject’ – Damon Gameau (who I interviewed earlier this year) shifts from a wholesome no-sugar diet to forty teaspoons of the stuff a day, all without a gram of traditionally ‘sweet stuff’ (lollies, chocolate, soda).
Rather than focusing purely on his physical transformation over the year – though there’s plenty of that, made entertaining with animation and celebrity cameos – Gameau analyses the social landscape surrounding sugar’s ubiquity. He breaks down – in discrete, carefully-researched detail – how anti-fat lobbyists only shifted the needle towards sugar, while visiting towns in America and outback Australia to reveal the scourge of sugar on already-disadvantaged communities.
I can’t speak for the veracity of the conclusions Gameau draws – I’m no nutritionist, and every nutritionist seems to have a different perspective anyway – but he backs up his shiny surface with enough facts to let you make up your own mind. To put my Maths teacher hat on for a second, the way he incorporates the scientific method and statistics into his approach – without alienating casual viewers – is truly impressive. Sweet stuff.