Food on the screen, cinema for dinner. The mash-up of these two ingredients spiced up the eight edition of the Culinary Zinema section of the San Sebastian International Film Festival, that took place in the Basque city from 21 to 29 September.
The culinary section of the Festival, sponsored by Nespresso, has been created in collaboration with the Berlin International Film Festival and jointly organized with the Basque Culinary Centre. Its declared proposal is “to unite cinema, gastronomy, and activities related to food in education, science, and agriculture”. It's a non-competitive section and it hosted a selection of seven gastronomy-related films accompanied by different themed dinners cooked by top chefs from all over the world like German Martitegui and Paco Morales. The closing themed dinner was served by the graduate students of the Basque Culinary Centre.
This year, the film productions came from Argentina, Canada, France, Japan, South Korea, Spain, and Singapore: a genuine journey around the world where food has been not only the fil rouge but also the real and effective mean to get acknowledged of different cultures and arts. Seven movies that narrated tales inspired in family restaurants, the fusion between art and gastronomy, the olive oil culture, the difficulties faced by female chefs, the return to a hometown from the big city, the search for origins and the start of an entrepreneurial adventure.
Here below you can enjoy the trailers of the seven films presented in San Sebastian.
Tegui: un asunto de familia
Alfred Oliveri, Argentina - On the 10th anniversary of Tegui, the top chef Germán Martitegui decided to close its doors and lead his entire team of 22 people – his family – to a unique experience: creating a restaurant from zero, in the middle of nowhere for 40 nights facing the Andes Mountain Range, with nothing but fires.
Bihar dok 13
Aitor Bereziartua and Ander Iriarte, Spain - At the Basque Culinary Center, five young talented students of cutting-edge gastronomy from all over the world will go back to the past to create the menu "Bihar dok 13", that is going to be served during a special meal enjoyed by the most relevant personalities in Basque culture today. Somehow, the old generation will symbolically open the door to the new.
Jaén, virgen & extra
José Luis López-Linares, Spain - In the early 21st century a revolution broke out in Jaén, one of Spain's least-known provinces: Picual, the most emblematic of its olives but historically rather underrated, may well produce the best extra virgin olive oil in the world. This documentary shows the challenges raised by this change seen through the eyes of the people from the Jaén olive groves, of the chefs who have seen in this change a revolution in terms of gastronomy and of the olive-producers and consumers.
Yim Soon-Rye, South Korea - Nothing's going to plan in young Hye-won's big-city life. On impulse, she puts her unresolved issues behind her and returns to her hometown. There she meets her childhood friends, Jae-ha and Eun-sook, who continue to live their unusual rural life their own way. From that winter on, Hye-won's days are filled with simple but peaceful moments, like eating meals made with organic ingredients. Over the 4 seasons, Hye-won slowly discovers the true pleasure of living a simple life.
Eric Khoo, Singapore - Japan - France - Masato, a young ramen chef, leaves his Japanese hometown on a culinary voyage to Singapore to discover the truth about his past and his family. During this delicious odyssey, Masato will discover the secrets of his ancestors, mouth-watering recipes and a whole lot more.
The heat: a kitchen (r)evolution
Maya Gallus, Canada - Restaurant kitchens are a pressurized stew of brutal hours, high stress and sleep deprivation. Acting out goes with the territory and anyone lower on the totem pole is fair game. The Heat takes viewers behind the scenes to meet pioneers who broke through the glass ceiling, including Michelin-starred chefs Anne Sophie Pic from Maison Pic in Valence, France; the UK star Angela Hartnett (and Gordon Ramsay's former protégé) from Murano; and award-winning New York chef Anita Lo (who closed her iconic New York restaurant Annisa after 17 years).
Y en cada lenteja un dios
Miguel Ángel Jiménez -Colmenar, Spain - Luis, a professional screenwriter, returns to Cocentaina, the town of his birth, in the mountains of inland Alicante, to help his brother, Kiko Moya and his cousin, Alberto Redrado, write a book about the cuisine of the restaurant run by their family: L’Escaleta, two Michelin-starred restaurant. A year passes and Luis can now re-connect with his family and the spectator to experience like never before the real life behind a Michelin-starred restaurant, brought to us by an entire family always committed to its passion for gastronomy and determined to give people the very best of themselves.