Have you watched Netflix's movie "To The Bone"? My mom and I watched it about a month ago, and recently someone asked me about my opinion of it. Hmm... I didn't really enjoy it. I'm sure a small portion of that came from simply not wanting to watch movies about eating disorders, as someone who lost a good chunk of her life to one. But the majority of my opinion comes from the way the main character was portrayed.
Now, I'm not saying I know everything about every eating disorder - no way. I only know mine and a few others, as well as the potential roots of the majority of them based on a psychology class I took this past year. Most eating disorders stem from a need for control + a dislike with one's current body image/distortion of one's body image. Mine was exactly that and I know of several other people (women, mostly) who can say the same thing.
Like I said, I don't know every cause for every disorder, nor do I think anyone can invalidate another's proposed cause for a disorder. In this movie, the main character's eating disorder was an act of rebellion against her broken family. Her real mother was not a significant part of her life (only at the end does she make an appearance), her step mother expressed concern for the disorder, and her sister seems to be the only person she feels close to. I don't want to give the entire movie away, so I will break this down into what I didn't like and what I did like:
WHAT I DIDN'T LIKE:
- the main character seemed emotionally more stable and confident than most people who suffer from eating disorders. She would probably be seen as one of those girls who "has it all together", like the badass who doesn't give a poop about what's going on and doesn't worry about tomorrow's exam or whatever.
- the trailer, for starters, plays upbeat music with bright titles that, together, give off a funky, exciting vibe as the main character refuses foods, does sit-ups and runs the staircase repeatedly, and spits out witty comments to other characters... until she passes out.
- the little things: she rattles off the calories in each food on her plate like it's a game (and her sister praises her for having "calorie Asperger's"); she goes out with a boy to a restaurant, chews her food, spits it back out, and they both laugh like it's no big deal; she's in a treatment home with several other girls and one boy who, for the most part, are made out to be weird and reserved people.
WHAT I DID LIKE:
- well, I'm glad she survives!
- that she finally showed her struggle with it all, rather than giving off the impression that it is all a choice one makes and it's empowering and blah blah blah.
- that other characters expressed their emotion - my mom felt she could relate to a lot what those characters said: feeling pushed away, helpless, lonely, etc.
Overall, I just wasn't a big fan because Hollywood did a fantastic job at glorifying anorexia, the number one most deadly mental illness. I don't know what I would've changed about it - I probably wouldn't have even made it into a movie because, like I said, Hollywood has a way of distorting viewers' perceptions of what truly happens in the real-life version of a disorder.
Ugh. I don't know. I'm torn between appreciating the attempt and despising the Hollywood-ness of it all. I don't know every disease, so the one portrayed here could certainly be relatable to what someone else is going through. Maybe I just have a sensitive soft spot in my heart for eating disorders and don't think they should be taken anything else than absolutely seriously.
Then again, is that a fault or ...?
Have you watched it? Any opinions? Share them below!
Makes one loaf, about 10-12 slices
1 cup grated zucchini, patted dry
1 1/2 cups whole-wheat flour
1/2 cup rolled oats, divided
1/2 cup non-dairy milk
1/2 cup honey
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted, plus extra for baking pan
1 tsp. almond extract
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. sea salt
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2. tsp. baking powder
- Preheat oven to 325 F and coat a bread loaf pan with coconut oil.
- In a blender, toss the whole-wheat flour, 1/4 cup rolled oats, milk, honey, eggs, and everything from the coconut oil to the baking powder. Blend on high until smooth.
- Stir in 1/4 cup rolled oats and grated zucchini.
- Pour batter into bread loaf pan and bake for 38-40 mins, or until the top is golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean.
- Let cool slightly, and then slice. Serve immediately and store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to one week.