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Quendrith Johnson

Quendrith Johnson is Los Angeles Correspondent covering everything happening in film in Hollywood... Well, the most interesting things, anyway.
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THE BODY FIGHTS BACK takes on lockdown weight gain, dysmorphia

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent

Unless you’ve been part of an anti-dieting rally in London, you may not have known that the pounds (or stones) quietly gained in lockdown for COVID19 reasons are not the biggest problem. The biggest problem is to rank diet as the biggest priority, so says THE BODY FIGHTS BACK, a new documentary out on July 13.

The film puts diet struggles in the rear view mirror.

Written and directed by Marian Võsumets, the film tracks five people who are caught up in the grip of “diet culture.” What is diet culture? Turn on your handheld, streaming device, any mass media outlet and wall-to-wall anxiety about body mass is the flavor of the day lately. And not just lately, but literally since the rise of mass media culture. 

From the rail-thin Flappers of the 1920’s to Kate Moss waifs in 1990’s to supermodels of 2020’s, being thin is “in.” Never mind the death toll in the fashion industry from diets. Allied Market Research reports that "The weight loss and weight management diet market size was valued at 192.2 billion in 2019, and is projected reach $295.3 billion by 2027."

Yet, there is pushback. Most recently Victoria’s Secret has scrapped the size zero club for more “relatable” body types, including people from diverse communities, allegedly. In truth, the new VS Collective includes US Soccer legend Megan Rapinoe, plus-model Paloma Elsesser, trans-spokesmodel Valentina Sampaio, Priyanka Chopra Jonas, youth ski champ Eileen Gu and model, refugee advocate Adut Akech, and almost-50 year old Amanda de Cadenet. (Brava!)

Study this official poster for THE BODY FIGHTS BACK, there are real people here living without guilt.

Self- starvation, running anorexics, bulimia sufferers, and binge-purgers are just some of the facets covered in THE BODY FIGHTS BACK.

Don’t avert your eyes, these are real thighs… :)



Shot from London’s current anti-diet movement, the footage “offers a unique insight into the complexity of eating disorders, body image struggles and most importantly, the socio-economic realities of health.”

Being any size, in other words, stick/thin/plus, is political. Once you see the fight against the fork as political, you will be free from diet culture, according to THE BODY FIGHTS BACK.

The filmmakers add that “The film fully meets the Academy diversity criteria, providing a platform to underrepresented groups such as Black, LGBTQ+ and Disabled people and features a female director and mainly female cast.”

Gravitas Ventures launches THE BODY FIGHTS BACK on iTunes and Apple TV on July 13, 2021.


Enjoy, and relax… there are worse things than eating a cupcake.

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About Quendrith Johnson

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