Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Film Feast: Soul Food Stories

Over the next week, we'll be featuring a film a day from the Film Feast series here on our site in anticipation of the release of the entire official Milwaukee Film Festival schedule on September 5th.

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Soul Food Stories seeks to explore not only why the food bring us together, but the many ways it could enrich our lives. Or as the director Tonislav Hristov puts it – “Soul Food isn’t a film about the food itself. Soul food is the ritual of getting together around the table when each one of your friends brings his own spice in the sense of experiencing each other.”
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Soul Food Stories
(Bulgaria, Finland / 2013 / Director: Tonislav Hristov)

Satovcha, Bulgaria, has a population of only 2,000, but among that small community are Christians, Muslims, atheists, and Roma (aka Gypsies) all living together. They are united by a shared love of their land and a willingness to solve any problems generated by their different theologies and ideologies by gathering around the dinner table as they prepare for sumptuous feasts. Capturing this unique small town and those who inhabit it with warmth and wit, Soul Food Stories follows attempts by the female population to expand their use of the village's social club from one to two days per week.

Watch the trailer: 

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Film Feast: Soul of a Banquet

Over the next week, we'll be featuring a film a day from the Film Feast series here on our site in anticipation of the release of the entire official Milwaukee Film Festival schedule on September 5th.
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Wang's no-frills film is modest and unfussy in approach, structured around 
an extended interview with Chiang at her home, and enhanced by additional context 
from Waters and food writer Ruth Reichl. -- David Rooney
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Soul of a Banquet
(USA / 2014 / Director: Wayne Wang)

Legendary chef Cecilia Chiang has been credited with bringing authentic Chinese cuisine to America with the opening of her famed restaurant The Mandarin in 1961. Her exploits are given tribute by director Wayne Wang (The Joy Luck Club), with a portrait equal parts personal history (examining her emigration from Shanghai to San Francisco) and food porn (the preparation, execution, and delivery of a banquet feast make up a large part of the narrative). Interviews from food industry luminaries Ruth Reichl and Alice Waters help flesh out this warm and sumptuous portrait of a gastronomical pioneer.

Trailer for this film is unavailable.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Film Feast: Slow Food Story

Over the next week, we'll be featuring a film a day from the Film Feast series here on our site in anticipation of the release of the entire official Milwaukee Film Festival schedule on September 5th.

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A joyous and delectable history of Carlo Petrini and the Slow Food Movement, which has grown from a small town group of friends to a worldwide revolution. -- Berlin Film Festival
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Slow Food Story
(Italy, Ireland / 2013 / Director: Stefano Sardo)

Born of humble beginnings nearly 30 years ago in response to McDonald’s making its way to Rome, activist Carlo Petrini’s Slow Food Movement has since created a worldwide food revolution—local chapters spread over 150 countries with the goal of rallying against the homogenization of cuisine and cultural identity that fast food and its bland immediacy have to offer. Slow Food Story tells the story of an endlessly convivial man whose belief that "an environmentalist who is not also a gastronome is very sad" has awoken many to the simple pleasures of cooking and eating through our local ecosystems—a sustainable and delicious way of living.

Watch the trailer: