Throughout twentieth- and early twenty-first century film history, food is most often absent altogether, is sometimes on the periphery, but occasionally takes center stage, amplifying plot and character, revealing important aspects of our humanity.
This colloquy would focus on food as an essential element in the chosen films, reflecting and enriching story and characters – often acting as a character itself. Think of the timpano and the omelet in Big Night, the pies in Waitress, the breakfast (and the mushrooms!) in Phantom Thread, the stew in Ratatouille, or the beef bourguignon in Julie and Julia. Each of these films hinge on meals cooked, served, and eaten. The viewer experiences the dishes visually, while savoring vicariously their taste, feel, and smell.
Brooke Dojny is an award-winning cookbook author and food writer with more than a dozen books to her credit, including The New England Cookbook, Dishing Up Maine, Lobster!, and Chowderland. Brooke lives in Sedgwick and can be found at her stove or frequenting farmers’ markets, farm stands, and clam shacks.
The facilitator will propose a list of four films, chosen from the following:
Phantom Thread (Netflix)
Always Be My Maybe (Netflix)
Chef (Amazon Prime)
Ratatouille (Amazon Prime)
Waitress (Amazon Prime)
Julie and Julia (Amazon Prime)
Big Night (Amazon Prime)
A Christmas Carol (Alastair Sim)(YouTube)
The facilitator will ask participants to view the chosen film title at home during the week prior to the scheduled discussion.
The facilitator will provide suggested topics for discussion for each film, including pulling out overall themes, how food amplifies those themes, how specific foods reveal character. Etc.
The facilitator will recommend ancillary books, articles, and interviews that offer behind-the-scenes glimpses of dealing with food and eating meals on a set, detailing some special challenges inherent in food-styling at a shoot, problematic technical issues, humorous incidents, etc.
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