2019 Film Festival Spotlight
Food + Film
Food encompasses all of the senses, with taste and smell perhaps the most prominent, but the visual element is arguably the most sensual. Many avid diners would claim the best seat in the house is one where they can see into the kitchen, and there’s nothing quite like the anticipation one feels at watching a beautiful dish come together, whether cooking it oneself or having it delivered to the table. The Festival films in this year’s spotlight all offer an immaculate feast for the eyes. Netflix has been a pioneer in food show programming, and their new episodic Street Food, from Chef’s Table (2015-) creator David Gelb, promises mouth-watering sidewalk fare from bustling Asian metropolises. Bloodroot offers the story of a lesbian couple and their feminist restaurant in Bridgeport, Connecticut, where they feature vegetarian takes on Thai chicken and African stews. Nothing Fancy: Diana Kennedy tells the story of one of the most eminent practitioners of Mexican cuisine who demonstrates how to make great guacamole (hint: lots of cilantro!). Finally, Singaporean director Eric Khoo’s Ramen Shop shows how food can bring cultures together as his protagonist Masato searches for the perfect recipe for the peppery pork rib soup known as bak kut teh.