Yung Chang

bill pullman fruit hunters

It would be a stretch to say The Fruit Hunters is the weirdest movie Bill Pullman has ever been in, but it might feature the weirdest appearance by the actor. And yet he’s just himself, apparently a fruit-obsessed man with an orchard in the backyard of his Hollywood home and — this is credited as being revealed in this very documentary — no sense of smell (which is pretty noteworthy in a food doc given the link between smell and taste). Maybe “weird” is not the correct word. That sounds sort of negative. “Strange” is better, if only because it’s not well known that Pullman has such a hobby in rare tree-borne delicacies. Or that it’s a hobby at all. The unknown is typically a great subject for nonfiction films, and this is no exception. How often do we think about the endangerment of fruit varieties? We barely even think about fruit at all, and filmmaker Yung Chang (Up the Yangtze; China Heaveyweight) makes the point early on that we take this type of food for granted  – there’s a joke about it growing on trees there somewhere (in the thought, if not directly in the film). And we tend to just consider the supermarket, still-life and basket basics, such as bananas (specifically the Cavendish, I now understand), apples, oranges, grapes, pears and cherries. Maybe pineapples. Who knew there were things called marang, which is said to taste like marshmallow; ice cream bean, which is actually more like cotton candy; […]

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published: 04.16.2014
B-
published: 04.14.2014
B
published: 04.14.2014
A-
published: 04.14.2014
C

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