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Portland EcoFilm Festival: The Fruit Hunters

By KAITIE TODD
[FOUR NIGHTS ONLY] Supermarket fruit has never looked as unappetizing as in The Fruit Hunters. In the opening minutes of Canadian director Yung Chang’s documentary, colorful fruits you’ve probably never seen or imagined are juxtaposed with piles of dull and colorless fruit at a grocery store. Chang’s film is an agricultural love story intent on showing the masses that fruit isn’t just something to eat every day—it’s something that has caused the rise and fall of dynasties, something that connects us to nature and something that can be a sort of treasure hunt, if only you seek it out. With fruit orchards looking just as grand as the arches of an Italian monastery, The Fruit Hunters carefully weaves the history of some of our best-known fruits (like Clementine oranges and Haas avocados) with the stories of dedicated fruit hunters, growers and “detectives,” such as a woman who searches for the Italian fruits depicted in centuries-old frescoes. We meet actor Bill Pullman as he works to create a community orchard in his neighborhood, and Honduran botanist Juan Fernando Aguilar as he tries to create a new breed of banana. While the footage of people tasting fruit grows a little tired—you can’t taste the fruit, after all—The Fruit Hunters succeeds in introducing the vibrant and surprisingly fascinating world of fruit while subtly advocating for its sustainability.
 

Special Note

Hollywood Theatre. 7:30 pm Thursday and Friday, 4:45 pm Saturday, 4:45 pm and 7:30 pm Sunday, May 9-12
 
  • Genres: Documentary
  • Running Time: 95 minutes
  • Country: Canada
  • Language: English
  • Critic's Score: B
  • Directed by: Yung Chang [Director], Yung Chang [Screenwriter], Mark Slutsky [Screenwriter], Mila Aung-Thwin [Producer], Bob Moore [Producer], Katherine Baulu [Producer], Louisa Schabas [Art Director]
  • Watch the trailer
 

Show Times

  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
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