In the interest of fair play, I thought I’d link to the response of Anat Baron, producer and director of the recent Beer Wars release, to the heavy criticism that has pounded her film since its release a few weeks back. The response is probably not going to be what most industry-related critics of the film might have hoped for as she seeks to address some of the more ludicrous criticisms, usually offered by beer enthusiasts or novice bloggers. These include how a person allergic to alcohol can make a film about it, that Rhonda Kallman had no business being in the film, that someone’s favorite brewery was not covered, etc. These are the low lying fruit, easily dismissed, and it would perhaps be of more interest if she addressed some of the more substantive issues raised by myself and other writers. She briefly touched upon one such issue, as she puts it: “The film is dated. Everything is good now. Craft beer is growing so the distribution issues are moot.” Her response is cursory and its underpinnings were uniformly rejected by numerous speakers (from all sides) at this past week’s Craft Brewers Conference in Boston. Her citation to a post by Stone Brewing’s Greg Koch is a bit more illuminating but only goes to show how the film missed another opportunity to capture something real and relevant. But, in any event, give it a read and we’ll put this subject to bed once and for all.
At the beginning of his keynote address to the Craft Brewers Conference in Boston, Stone Brewing Company’s CEO and co-founder Greg Koch played a video he and others had collaboratively produced for the occasion. It is a great video, especially the first minute or so (a great viral or television commercial in itself) and was an excellent start to a solid and interactive address to the conventioneers. I anticipate that a lot of viewers of the recent Beer Wars documentary expected to see something similar and that is one of the reasons they left disappointed. The tone gets a little preachy at times and also takes several direct swipes at the big guys, promotional approaches whose appeal and viability can be debated (and were yesterday during the conference, with one presenter actively advising against them). In any event, definitely take a look at the video below and feel free to offer your thoughts.
I Am A Craft Brewer from I Am A Craft Brewer on Vimeo.