“Give Food a Chance” is the motto of the 5th Culinary Cinema of the 61st Berlinale. It will be held from February 13 to 18, 2011. Twelve films about food and the environment will be shown in the movie theatre at the Martin-Gropius-Bau. Following the screenings at 7:30 pm, the renowned chef Sonja Frühsammer as well as Michelin star chefs Michael Hoffmann, Thomas Kammeier, Michael Kempf and Tim Raue will serve meals that have been inspired by the films in the “Gropius Mirror” restaurant, an elegant tent lined with mirrors.
Dieter Kosslick sums up this year’s Culinary Cinema: “Let’s give food a chance to become the focal point of our lives again and not poisonous junk disguised as food. During the Berlinale ten years ago, we began cooking with an awareness for quality and serving decent wines. And then five years ago we launched Culinary Cinema to call attention to the relationship between film, culture, cuisine and the environment. Food brings people together and connects them to their surroundings. A country’s cuisine is a yardstick of its culture.”
“In 2011 ‘Back to the Roots’ is the cinematic and culinary theme of Culinary Cinema’s evening programme,” remarks project head Thomas Struck. The series will open with South Korean director Anna LEE and her feature film Dwen-Jang (The Recipe). A television journalist sets out in search of the recipe for a tantalizing soybean soup. At the end of his odyssey he realizes that not only the best ingredients are indispensable for the recipe but also love and sorrow, as well as being in communion with nature and traditions. After the film, Michael Hoffmann, who was declared Chef of the Year by "Der Feinschmecker" magazine, will prepare an essence of vegetables from his own garden.
Following the US production Jiro Dreams of Sushi by David Gelb Tim Raue will have the delicate task of creating a several course meal inspired by Japan. The film portrays the legendary 85-year-old sushi master Jiro Ono. His restaurant Sukiyabashi Jiro is located in a subway station in Tokyo. It seats only ten but has three Michelin stars. Chef Tim Raue was there, and loves both Ono’s sushi and the film.
For Charlie Arturaola, who is a famous sommelier, to have lost his sense of taste and of smell is a catastrophe. El Camino del Vino (The Ways of Wine) by Nicolás Carreras shows Charlie’s journey to both enormous and small vineyards in Argentina in an attempt to recover his lost senses. At the end of his voyage he has gained self-knowledge. The finesse of the film, made in a neo-realistic style, lies in its protagonists who are authentic. Sonja Frühsammer will create a meal for the occasion.
In También la lluvia (Even the Rain), Spanish director Icíar Bollaín has created a film in a film set against the protests in Bolivia, known as the Cochabamba Water Wars, triggered by the privatisation of the municipal waterworks. In this situation, a historical feature film is being made about Christopher Columbus and the exploitation of the indigenous population. Back then, it had been about gold; today, while the film is being shot, it is about water as a basic resource. Thomas Kammeier will cook a meal inspired by the film.
Set in the 1960s, Toast by SJ Clarkson is based on the autobiography of the popular English author and cook Nigel Slater. Young Nigel discovers cooking and his own sexuality. Tears of happiness and sorrow lie close together in both. Michael Kempf will pay tribute to this drama in a several course meal. Toast will screen in Culinary Cinema after it has premiered in the Berlinale Special.
The late 10 pm screenings will focus on ecological and social issues. The documentary The Pipe by Risteard Ó Domhnaill gives an up-close account of Irish fishermen’s successful battle against the laying of a pipeline. In Unser Garten Eden (Our Garden of Eden) Mano Khalil observes a Swiss allotment garden that forms its own multicultural universe. The close relationship between pigs and their slaughterers is portrayed in Bertram Verhaag’s film Ehrfurcht vor dem Leben (Reverence for Life) and in Hans Dortman’s Divine Pig. Le Quattro Volte (The Four Times) by Michelangelo Frammartino revolves around a number of elements: wood, fire, wind, goats and a fatally ill shepherd in a Calabrian village. The Japanese feature film Meshi to Otome (Food and the Maiden) by Minoru Kurimura devotes itself with gentle humour to the eating disorders of three young couples.
At “Youth Food Cinema” on February 18 at 9:30 am, Taste the Waste by Valentin Thurn will confront school classes with the fact that food is often wasted. Following the screening, pupils will discuss “best before” dates and composting with the staff of Slow Food and the Berliner Tafel (a non-profit organization that collects food donations, and distributes them to social and charitable organisations in Berlin). Afterwards star chef Michael Hoffmann and the pupils will cook a several course meal with food that shops have thrown away.
“Tea Time” at 5 pm in the “Gropius Mirror” restaurant will include readings, discussion and tastings. On February 14, Karen Duve will read from her bestseller "Anständig Essen". Carlo Petrini will present his new book "Terra Madre" on February 15; and Stuart Pigott, his book "Weinwunder Deutschland", on February 16, followed by a wine tasting. Ursula Heinzelmann will serve German cheeses for the occasion.
Culinary Cinema ticket sales start on February 7, 2011, 10am at the central ticket counters in the Arkaden am Potsdamer Platz, in Kino International and in the Urania as well as online at www.berlinale.de and at ticket offices connected to the Eventim network.
Films in 2011:
Dwen-Jang (The Recipe) South Korean
by Anna LEE
with RYOO Seung-Yong, LEE Yo-Won, LEE Dong-Wook
Jiro Dreams of Sushi USA
Documentary by David Gelb
with Jiro Ono
El Camino del Vino (The Ways of Wine) Argentina
Documentary by Nicolás Carreras
with Charlie Arturaola, Michel Rolland, Andreas Larsson, Pandora Anwyl, Donato de Santis
También la lluvia (Even the Rain) Spain/France/Mexico
by Icíar Bollaín
with Luis Tosar, Gael García Bernal, Juan Carlos Aduviri, Karra Elejalde, Raúl Arévalo
Toast Great Britain
by SJ Clarkson
with Helena Bonham Carter, Ken Stott, Victoria Hamilton,
Meshi to Otome (Food and the Maiden) Japan
by Minoru Kurimura
with Mayu Sakuma, Rie Tamaka, Takae Okamura, Satoshi Kamimura, Kentaro Kishi, Toru Kikuchi, Shoichiro Masumoto
The Pipe Ireland
Documentary by Risteard Ó Domhnaill
Unser Garten Eden (Our Garden of Eden) Switzerland
Documentary by Mano Khalil
Le Quattro Volte (The Four Times) Italy, Germany, Switzerland
Documentary by Michelangelo Frammartino
Divine Pig Netherlands
Documentary by Hans Dortmans
Ehrfurcht vor dem Leben (Reverence for Life) Germany
Documentary by Bertram Verhaag
Taste the Waste Germany
Documentary by Valentin Thurn
January 24, 2011