Reel Food: Essays on Food and Film, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Reel Food

Essays on Food and Film, 1st Edition

Edited by Anne L. Bower


364 pages

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First published in 2005. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa company.


"Anne Bower's Reel Food is an intellectual feast, where each essay serves a delicious new course filled with meaty morsels and delightful aromas. It provides thoughtful lenses in which to view the culinary dimensions of all films, but be prepared to reexamine the taste sensations of traditional food movies, such as Chocolat, Babette's Feast, Eat Drink Man Woman, and Tortilla Soup. I ignored the incessant urge to put the book down and head to out to the video rental store to pick up the films devoured in this book. I'll never look at a movie without seeing its culinary dimensions in new ways. So, make some popcorn and settle down in your easy chair--you're headed for a great read." -- Andrew F. Smith, editor-in-chief, Oxford Encyclopedia of Food and Drink in America

"From sci-fi to horror, from romance to adventure, the films discussed in this collection are enriched by cogent analyses of the ways food is used to signal issues of cultural identity, assimilation, and conflict. With Reel Food, you won't need popcorn." -- Darra Goldstein, Editor, Gastronomica: The Journal of Food and Culture

"Reel Food is the go-to book for anyone interested in the rich intersections between food and film studies. The compelling, wide-ranging essays gathered here demonstrate that if you are interested in film, then you can't ignore food, and vice versa

." -- Doris Witt, author of Black Hunger: Soul Food and America

Table of Contents

1. Watching Food: The Production of Food, Film, and Values, Anne L. Bower

Section I: Cooking Up Cultural Values

2. Feel Good Reel Food: A Taste of Cultural Kedgeree in Gurinder Chadha's What's Cooking?, Debnita Chakravarti

3. Food, Play, Business and the Image of Japan in Juzo's Tampopo, Michael Ashkenazi

4. Il Timpano- "To Eat Good Food is to be Close to God": The Italian-American

Reconciliation of Stanley Tucci's Big Night, Margaret Coyle

5.Cooking Mexicanness: Shaping National Identity in Alfonso Arau's Como agua

para chocolate,Miriam Lopez-Rodriguez

6. Chickens, Jams, and Kitchens: Modern Food and Malay Films of the 1950s and 1960s, Timothy P. Barnard

7. "I'll Have Whatever She's Having": Jews, Food, and Film, Nathan Abrams

8. Food as Representative of Ethnicity and Culture in George Tillman Jr.'s Soul Food, Maria Ripolli's Tortilla Soup, and Tim Reid's Once Upon A Time When We Were Colored, Robin Balthrope

Section II: Focus on Women--the Body, the Spirit

9. Gendering the Feast: Women, Spirituality, and Grace in Three Food Films, Margaret McFadden

10. Food, Sex, and Power at the Dining Room Table in Zhang Yimou's Raise the Red Lantern, Ellen J. Fried

11. Anorexia Envisioned: Mike Leigh's Life is Sweet, Chul-Soo Park's 301/302, and Todd Haynes's Superstar, Gretchen Papazian

12. Production, Reproduction, Food, and Women in Herbert Biberman's Salt of the Earth and Lourdes Portillo and Nina Serrano's After The Earthquake, Carole Counihan

13. Images of Consumption in Jutta Bruckner's Hunger Years, Yogini Joglekar

Section III: Making Movies, Making Meals

14. Appetite for Destruction: Gangster Food and Genre Convention in Quentin

Tarantino's Pulp Fiction, Rebecca L. Epstein

15. "Leave the Gun; Take the Cannoli": Food and Family in the Modern American

Mafia Film, Marlisa Santos

16. All-Consuming Passions: Peter Greenaway's The Cook, the Thief, His Wife and Her Lover, Raymond Armstrong

17. Jean-Pierre Jeunet and Marc Caro's Delicatessen: An Ambiguous Memory, an Ambivalent Meal, Kyri Watson Claflin

18. Futuristic Foodways: The Metaphorical Meaning of Food in Science

Fiction Films, Laurel Forster

19. Supper, Slapstick, and Social Class: Dinner as Machine in the Silent Films

of Buster Keaton, Eric L. Reinholtz

20. Banquet and Beast: The Civilizing Role of Food in 1930s Horror Films, Blair Davis

21. Engorged with Desire: Hitchcock Films and the Gendered Politics of Eating,

David Greven

22. What About the Popcorn? Food and Film-Watching Experiences, James Lyons

About the Editor

Anne L. Bower is Associate Professor of English at Ohio State University, Marion. She is author of Epistolary Responses: The Letter in 20th-Century American Fiction and Criticism and editor of Recipes for Reading: Community Cookbooks, Stories, Histories.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
COOKING / Essays
PERFORMING ARTS / Film & Video / General
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Media Studies