Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Free International Films/Food tonight @ TCU !

[thanks to John Singleton of TCU's International Office for the following announcement. this sounds great! ]

*** 4 FOOD FILMS ****


Film & food pairings:

6:00 pm

"Tampopo" and Piranha Sushi:
"Big Night" and Mellow Mushroom:

8:30 pm

"Like Water for Chocolate" and Red Cactus:
"The God of Cookery" and Sapristi!:

film reviews - by John Singleton

TAMPOPO is the story of a Japanese Noodle house. Not so funny, huh! Not until you realize that the film director is in love with Clint Eastwood, and has adapted all the cultural variations of the great Hollywood Western to this Japanese film, right down to the black cowboy hat and a damsel in distress. Every Top Ten List I’ve read includes John Ford’s The Searchers. Personally, I’d rather go with Director Juzo Itami and his search for a perfect Noodle House any day, and if you were to put “The Searchers” in a blender with “Babette’s Feast” and “Shaolin Soccer,” this is what you’d have. Tampopo is paired with Kenzo Tran’s Piranha Sushi, a unique, trendy downtown restaurant that serves both sushi and style, and will be providing plenty of both tonight for film goers. Don’t miss the 6:00 pm start time!

BIG NIGHT is a uniquely Italian-American version of the “Coming to America” dream, as two brothers struggle with the identity of their cuisine on both a real and metaphorical level, while looming over them and just down the street is an “American-style” Italian restaurant with designs on the culinary skills of one brother. This film never makes anyone’s top ten list except mine, but I swear its beautiful, its simple and it is sublime. Isabella Fiorella Elettra Giovanna Rossellini’s part is small, but I’ll watch Italian advertisements for polenta if she’s selling. Mellow Mushroom is about as Italian as I am, but when Sapristi! Chef/Owner Carlos Cavasos passed up on both Latin American and Italian cuisine in order to do Chinese for us, well I could hardly walk away from that. Anyway, I like their pizzas and I’m ordering some strange ones tonight!

"THE GOD OF COOKERY" is the funniest movie I’ve ever seen!” Liz Branch and Dr. Carrie Currie both told me that before I ever saw Stephen Chow’s hilarious film. Ok, I know I sound like a broken record, but the point can’t be over done…Chow knows exactly what you expect from Hong Kong cinema, and he gives it you with both barrels, but... in 100 years they will say of Chow: “He clearly understood the expected stereotypes and used them both to fill his theaters but also to give the audience a deeper appreciation of their origins.” In the God of Cookery, an abominable, defrocked chef must battle all the demons of material gain, then their loss, in order to find his way back to culinary glory. Sapristi! remains one of the hottest and hippest, all-the-while keeping the southside’s finest happy with an atmosphere that is half crème de New York and half Eurotrash…but not-to-be overlooked is what emerges nightly from that amazing kitchen and the minds of Carlos and Brandon.

LIKE WATER FOR CHOCOLATE is the staple of Latin American Food films, and for good reason. Beyond a good retelling of Laura Esquivel’s opus, the film tries religiously to honor the role of food—primary to the novel—in the film. In Spanish, “Como Agua Para Chocolate” is slang for a woman who is “beautifully-inspired” and waiting for her love. The film rarely loses that sense of fire throughout, but is there anyone who hasn’t seen it? The film is destined for the kind of classic status that “The Wizard of Oz” has, and though you think I exaggerate, trust me that virtually everyone I’ve known across the planet has seen that film. Red Cactus will be providing an array of hand-foods or “entremeses,” and before you simply say, “what, fast food,” slow down. I, dubiously dubbed by my friends as El Rey de los Tacos (following Amy Culbertson’s article), absolutely swear by their simple, unpretentious and delicious stuff.

film country restaurant time space

1. Tampopo Japan Piranha Sushi 6:00 pm SRH #2
2. Big Night US/Italy Mellow Mushroom 6:00 pm srh #4
3. Like Water For chocolate Mexico RED CACTUS 8:30 pm SRh #2
4. The god of cookery China Sapristi 8:30 pm SRH #4

Directions: I-30 exit to University and take University South. When you pass through the light at juncture with W. Cantey you are close. Now there are only streets off University on your left. Take the second street past W. Cantey, which is W. Bowie . The huge building on your left is the Sid Richardson Complex, shaped as a huge hour glass with an opening in the center. In the second half of the structure, on a level lower than the street but closest to W. Bowie , you will find glass doors that open and immediately to your left are lecture halls 2 and 4. After 5 you may park on campus in spots that are not posted as reserved and/or are not listed as handicapped.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hey Tammy Thanks for posting about Kino Monda. I had never heard of this until a few minutes ago when a patron here at the library was looking for information about it. Looks fascinating; I will have to get there some time soon.

Connie K.