» » Moo: A Documentary (2013)

Short summary

Is the nostalgic family farm a thing of the past? Is it inevitably becoming obsolete, strong-armed out of operation by large corporate farms? Maybe, but if so, no one has told the Westendorps. Their small, family dairy farm is a successful producer of milk and ice cream. In fact, they recently won the 2012 Best Ice Cream Parlor in Michigan Award. This family does what their grandparents did a long time ago, but in a very different way! Moo: A Documentary explores the significance of family farms, what technology has to contribute, and the process of making milk and ice cream that results in a delicious product that can be enjoyed by their community.

User reviews

  • comment
    • Author: Jothris
    I recently watched the feature length film Moo Man which was about a similar topic as this short film, and although not a perfect film it did engage me and I watched a few more things on the subject. Coming to this one I was aware that this was a student film – something that the maker also wanted us to know since the only FAQ on the IMDb page is "is this a student project", to which the answer is yes. Visually you would not know this because the film looks very professional, with clear, sharp footage and nice use of graphics. This gives the look at the Westendorp's Michigan family farm a professional feel throughout and I liked this.

    There are a few signs of inexperience through the interviews (Levi fidgeting throughout his interviews for example) but generally it is professionally filmed and edited. The weakness comes in a more fundamental level than just technical aspect though, and this is in the tone of the film. It puts documentary in the title but it doesn't ever feel like one, instead it feels like an infomercial. The choice of cheery, obvious music is probably the most superficial factor in this feeling but the material is the problem since the film is never more than "hi, tell us who you are and what you do" and as a result it is basically an advert for a friendly, family-run business.

    I'm fine with this to a point, being from the rural NE of Northern Ireland I appreciate anything that helps out independent farming, however this doesn't mean that it makes for a good short film. It is nicely put together by da Silva and the family and their business are engaging and interesting, however the tone and material of the film really feels like the Westendorp family just got a friendly, welcoming video for their reception area.
  • Credited cast:
    Doug Westendorp Doug Westendorp - Himself
    Levi Westendorp Levi Westendorp - Himself
    Louisa Westendorp Louisa Westendorp - Herself
    Troy Westnedorp Troy Westnedorp - Himself
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