It’s TIFF time so we took a moment to quiz the Sanagan’s staff on their favourite food movies. Being dedicated film buffs, they didn’t disappoint. If you’re looking for a feast for the eyes, here’s the Sanagan’s Meat Locker Non-Authoritative, Incomplete Guide to Culinary Cinema.
GREAT FOOD MOVIES (in no particular order)
TAMPOPO Japan 1985
Described as a Ramen Western, this film about one woman’s quest for the perfect bowl of noodles is consistently funny and makes you more hungry than any other movie in history.
BABETTE’S FEAST Denmark 1987
Set in 19th century Denmark, the film depicts the preparation and serving of a single celebratory blow-out meal prepared for a table-load of abstemious elders by Babette, their housekeeper who reveals herself as a once-renowned French chef. If you’ve ever doubted the glory of classic French cuisine, watch this.
JIRO DREAMS OF SUSHI America/Japan 2011
A Portrait of the Artist As An Old Man. 85 years, ten seats, and three Michelin stars is the equation of obsession depicted in this documentary. It’s as close as most of us will ever get to eating there. Bonus – Philip Glass soundtrack.
THE BIG NIGHT America 1996
Italian food, Italian families, Louis Prima, adultery and the 1950’s all get mixed up in this big tempestuous foodie hit. Even Isabella Rossellini is eclipsed by the real star of the movie, an epic casserole called the Timpano.
RATATOUILLE America 2007
Ratatouille, the story of a restauranting rodent by Pixar, goes all in on food culture. Don’t forget that you’re listening to the voices of Ian Holme (Bilbo) and Peter O’Toole.
THE TRIP(S) Britain 2010, 2014, 2017
Two men behaving badly and hilariously sampling modern cuisine in restaurants that take themselves really seriously. Arguably the greatest Michael Caine scene of all time and Michael Caine’s not even in it.
CUT! — GREAT FOOD SCENES
GOODFELLAS America 1990
Those wiseguys living large in prison with Paul Sorvino (Mira’s dad) razor-blading garlic is by far and away the favourite food scene with the Sanangan’s gang. Like Vinny says, “You gotta have the pork, that’s the flava”.
FRENZY Britain 1972
Multiple scenes of Chief Inspector Oxford’s hopes for good old bangers and mashed being dashed by his wife’s attempts at domestic self-improvement via gourmet cooking, all depicted with humorous, queasy Hitchcockian detachment.
DIAMONDS ARE FOREVER Britain 1971
James Bond schools M on the finer points of sherry.
BOND: “Pity about your liver sir. It’s an unusually fine solera. ‘51 I believe.”
M: “There is no year for Sherry 007.”
BOND: “I was referring to the original vintage on which the Sherry is based — 1851.”
ROCKY America 1976
Take your pick: Sly chasing chickens, chugging raw eggs, or tenderizing some sides in the meat locker; Rocky trained with an entire grocery store.
OLDBOY Korea 2003
You have no idea what fresh seafood means until you watch this incredible movie. Don’t invite your PETA friends.
Honorable Mention: Chocolat, The 100-Foot Journey, Mostly Martha, Julia and Julia, Chef, Kings of Pastry