OK, suburban kid, go out and get some meat. No, no, I don’t mean go to the supermarket. Chop off a chicken’s head. Shoot a wild bird, Shoot a squirrel. Pluck and gut and cook animals to eat. You suburban parents, let your 13-year-old go off and shoot a wild boar and bring meals home to family.
In the film “An Acquired Taste,” this all happens across more than a year’s time, under caring supervision – caring about the kids and the animals and the nature-connected processes. Granted there’s some yuppie and school-ish feel to this documentary story but still genuine as it follows three young teens through impressive hands-on education.
Nick is the relatively matter-of-fact one. Alex has big anxieties to overcome. Ashlie is the most interesting one, all shy and unconfident yet somehow the most ready and able to travel this rite of passage.
The parents worry about accidents or psychic injury, or maybe their innocent child might get all into the dominance, the love of killing. The parents very clearly demonstrate loving relationships with their kids.
Should people be meat-eaters? “An Acquired Taste” doesn’t look at that issue particularly. Should we be more connected to where the meat comes from? It’s well worth the documentary time to walk this walk, not the least of which that this film has a character richness you don’t typically associate with documentaries. Bon Appétit.