Film Reviews

Exploring Four Dimensions Of Flavor With Samin Nosrat’s Senses-first Approach in Netflix’s Four-Part Series: Salt Fat Acid Heat

Is it really possible to boil cooking down to balancing just four elements that, when understood, can make anyone a great cook? Well, that’s the premise and purpose behind chef, author and now documentary host Samin Nosrat’s four-part Netflix series, Salt Acid Fat Heat, based on her similarly titled cookbook, Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat: Mastering […]

Film Portrait of Wendell Berry Disappoints Expectations

Wendell Berry has been the conscience of rural America for several decades, presenting a cohesive, considered response to the over-industrialization of our lives. He has done so through his essays, novels, and poetry, while living a life as a Kentucky farmer with a deep connection to the land that allows him to put his beliefs […]

Dan Barber, Blue Hill Chef & Author of The Third Plate, Profiled on the Documentary Series Chef’s Table

The Netflix documentary series Chef’s Table, created by David Gelb (director of Jiro Dreams of Sushi, the 2011 documentary film about 85 year old Jiro Ono, considered by many to be the world’s greatest sushi chef), is now in its third season. Each episode of the globetrotting show has focused on a single world-renowned chef, including chefs […]

The Perennial Plate Documentary Series Strikes Gold For St. Patrick’s Day

The Perennial Plate has created more than 150 short documentaries that share the theme of Adventures in Sustainable Eating. A recent documentary produced by the two-time James Beard Award winning online weekly documentary series dedicated to socially responsible and adventurous eating, is perfectly timed for St. Patrick’s Day. Episode 168: Howth, Dublin, with a soundtrack of […]

Raw Roots of The McDonald’s Corp Exposed in The Founder Starring Michael Keaton as Ray Kroc

We have sung the praises of the Slow Food movement founded by Carlo Petrini in 1989 as an outgrowth of his campaign against the McDonald’s fast food chain opening near the Spanish Steps in Rome. This global, grassroots organization’s mission is to prevent the disappearance of local food cultures and traditions, counteract the rise of […]

Michael Pollan & Alex Gibney Discuss the Making of the Netflix Series Cooked

While the newspaper business in the 21st century may still be struggling to find a solid financial footing, the New York Times, at least, seems to have found one revenue stream that entertains, enlightens, and also brings home the bacon: TimesTalks, live and webcasted conversations (now in its 18th year) between its journalists and “21st century […]

Fed Up With America’s Sugar Addiction

Fed-Up, a documentary film directed by Stephanie Soechtig, narrated by Katie Couric, and written by Mark Monroe and Ms. Soechtig (92 minutes)  [Distributed by Radius-TWC, a boutique label from the Weinstein Company, 2014] “Move more, eat less” has always seemed to provide an easily understood remedy for losing excess bodyweight.  Burn more calories than you […]

A Sheepfarmer’s Lonesome Life Comes Undone in Perceptive Film

The Auction (Le Dématelement), a Canadian film with screenplay and direction by Sébastian Pilote, in French with English subtitles (111 minutes) [Film Movement, a North American distributor of independent and foreign films, 2013] This beautiful to behold, wonderfully acted, and deeply felt film has one uncharacteristic lighter moment.  Gaby Gagnon (played by the superb actor, […]

Forks Over Knives, Preventing Disease with a Plant-Based, Whole-Food Diet

Forks over Knives, a documentary film written and directed by Lee Fulkerson (96 minutes) [Virgil Films, 2011] Michael Pollan in his Food Rules, answers one of the basic questions of life, “What should I eat?” with seven words: “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.”  Pollan’s advice to “eat food” is rooted in his rejection […]

Nothing Like CHOCOLATE, a Journey to the Heart of Chocolate

  Nothing Like CHOCOLATE, a documentary film directed by Kum-Kum Bhavnani (68 minutes) [Mirror and Hammer Films, 2013] This past June, the untimely death of Mott Green, the founder of The Grenada Chocolate Company, saddened chocolate aficionados who were aware of his mission to create a chocolate company that went beyond simply carrying a Fair […]

Brunswick, A Portrait of a Farmer and the End of Rural Life

Brunswick, a documentary film directed by Nate Simms (56 minutes) [Country Boy Productions, 2011,] The town of Brunswick in upstate New York’s Rensselaer County is on the eastern edge of the rapidly suburbanizing Capital Region.  The Capital Region’s three urban centers of Albany, Schenectady and Troy have all lost significant population in the past […]

What's On Your Plate?

What’s On Your Plate? A documentary film directed by Catherine Gund (70 minutes) [Aubin Pictures, 2010,] A full house greeted the showing of the documentary, What’s On Your Plate?, at the Saratoga Film Forum’s fall fundraiser [].  The sold-out crowd of all ages at the Dee Sarno Theater in The Arts Center in downtown […]

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