Friday, April 16, 2010

A Food Film to See: SOUL KITCHEN, Fatih Aikin, 2009

A scene from Soul Kitchen, 2009

I have gushed before about the pleasures and advantages of reading the New York Times' Weekend Arts section every Friday. This is my serious and passionate pursuit of art information, not posturing or east-coast chauvinism. One cannot seriously follow the developments of visual culture (read: art history and criticism) without it.
So it's particularly rewarding to find in today's issue (April 16, 2010) reviews of a newly-released film, Soul Kitchen, a comedy by the widely-acclaimed (in Europe) Turkish-German director, Fatih Aikin, 2009.While African Americans appear, the story centers on Turkish-Germans (an ethnic group that experiences much strife in their new homeland) and their small roadside restaurant that needs a shot of energy and inspiration. One thinks of The Big Night (1996), starring the marvelous Tony Shalhoub and Stanley Tucci who, with Campbell Scott, also directed. They had their sociocultural problems, too.
In an interview, Aikin revealed that he began writing the script in 2003 as a serious tale but he was both surprised and happy as the plot slowly evolved (or revealed itself) as comedy. The sexual content is, ah, well, explicit, but that didn't disqualify him for an invitation to Cannes and other film festivals where he received excellent response.

Set your browser on the title and see the reviews and trailers in English, German, Greek and so forth. Apparently, they are all interested in this film, and readers will, too.

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