Second Screens: Foodie Edition
SECOND SCREENS: Foodie Edition is a monthly virtual cinematic and culinary experience celebrating food in film and bringing “Dinner and a Movie” to your home.
Foodie Edition features local chefs Chrissy Antenucci, Hideki Harada, Frances Kroner, and Jean-Robert de Cavel paired with four food-centric movies and the cuisines they represent. From February through May, the series features a film-inspired recipe from a local chef, an original video conversation highlighting food and film, and online engagement to encourage participation in your own kitchen.
These iconic films celebrate notable anniversaries in 2021, making it the perfect time to rewatch an old favorite or discover a cinematic treasure for the first time. Food takes center stage in these films: representing economic opportunity and the American Dream in Big Night (1996), as an essential means of survival in Spirited Away (2001), a tool by the greatest candyman of all time to create fanciful moments of escape and spark the imagination in Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (1971), and as an emotional way to connect with others in Amélie (2001).
Big Night (1996)
A darling of the indie film circuit, Big Night is the story of two brothers, Primo (Tony Shalhoub) and Secondo (Stanley Tucci), who run a small authentic Italian restaurant on the Jersey Shore in the mid-1950s. While one brother is lured by the ritz and glam of a neighboring restaurant, the other is unwilling to compromise authentic cuisine in order to entice American customers, who are drawn to simplified meals and style over substance.
Big Night follows these Italian immigrants, as they prepare one last amazing meal from start to finish. The film equally highlights Primo’s preparations in the kitchen, while showcasing Secondo’s attention to detail in the dining room. From rolling the pasta for the famous timpano, to Louis Prima playing on the record player, these scenes create a special cinematic experience where good food, wine, and music truly bring people together.
Chef Chrissy Antenucci offers a pasta recipe that will be a delicious pairing with Big Night. Like the film’s small restaurant, Paradise, Chef Antenucci of The Wheel in Oakley is bringing authentic pastas and bread to our regional food scene.
Spirited Away (2001)
In Spirited Away, a young Chihiro moves to a new town with her parents, where she discovers that they have been turned into glutenous pigs by the sorceress Yubaba. She takes a job in a bath house in order to survive, and to free herself and her parents from the curse. Chihiro realizes that food represents power and survival in this fantastical world, when her new friend Haku explains that “unless you eat something from this world, you’ll vanish.”
Winner of the Best Animated Feature at the 75th Academy Awards, this masterpiece from Studio Ghibli, realistically depicts authentic food from varying cultures, like Japanese rice balls, Chinese steamed buns, and konpeito (a Japanese hard candy introduced by the Portugese).
Chef Hideki Harada’s recipe for Onigiri looks to Japan, where he trained as a sushi chef, for his culinary interpretation of Spirited Away. Hideki and his wife opened Kiki, a Japanese pub-style restaurant in College Hill, inspired by the concept of Japanese izakaya, where dishes aren’t necessarily held to strict tradition but are a delicious cultural mash up.
Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (1971)
Directed by Mel Stuart. 100 minutes
CHEF PAIRING: Frances Kroner, Sleepy Bee Cafe
Recipe: The Crunchy Creamy All Day Every Day Good On Everything Chocolatey Shmear
Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory started out as a film to promote and sell chocolate, but ended up being a cult classic featuring one of Gene Wilder’s greatest performances. The film, based on the book by Roald Dahl, tells the story of young Charlie Bucket’s search for a golden ticket, and the opportunity to experience the fantastical world of a culinary genius. From the opening scene detailing how chocolate is made, to Bill’s Candy Shop, and the famous Oompa Loompa factory workers–the music, art direction, characters, and sets of Willy Wonka create a technicolor world rooted in pure imagination.
The film depicts the power of food to transform and uplift—from the bite of a scrumdidilyumptious bar and lickable fruit flavored wallpaper, to the changing flavors of an everlasting gobstopper. What went from a contest to win a lifetime supply of chocolate and exclusive factory tour, transforms one little boy’s life forever, where he learns that vision, hard work, and a little bit of imagination, can truly make “the world taste good.”
Frances Kroner creates a one-of-a-kind whimsical recipe in honor of this sugary sweet classic film. Sleepy Bee Cafe is known for food that appeals to the conscious eater, supporting local purveyors, and surrounding the culinary experience with art.
Directed by Jean-Pierre Jeunet. 122 minutes. French with English Subtitles
CHEF PAIRING: Jean-Robert de Cavel from French Crust Café & Bistro, Le Bar a Boeuf, and Frenchie Fresh
Recipes: Selection of French Sauces and Dressings
After watching Amélie you will never crack creme brûlée the same, and always remember that “even artichokes have hearts.” Set in the Montmartre neighborhood of Paris in the mid-1990s, Audrey Tautou plays Amélie, a quirky introvert longing for love and connection. Food is ever present in her world, as she takes pleasure in helping everyone from the customers at The Two Windmills Cafe where she works, to the grocer she befriends and defends. As Amélie searches for a mysterious crush, the food that characters buy, cook, and consume not only grounds them in reality, but creates a sensorial cinematic space for fantasy and escape.
Chef Jean-Robert de Cavel presents a selection of sauces and dressings in the classic French tradition. Enjoy these pairings as you enter Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s wonderful world of Amélie.
Press Release (PDF): FotoFocus Announces SECOND SCREENS: Foodie Edition