Tickets for the 42nd Vancouver International Film Festival, September 28th to October 8th, go on sale today (September 7th) at noon, sharp! Which means it’s time to get down to the serious business of strategizing our in-theatre screen time. One film screening that’s non-negotiable for us: filmmaker Tran Anh Hùng’s award-winning (Best Director, 2023 Cannes Film Festival) new film, The Pot-au-Feu.
It shouldn’t come as any surprise that a film devoting ample time to, and appreciation for, culinary artistry would be at the top of our VIFF 2023 ‘must see’ list. The Pot-au-Feu is a late-19th-century period film, centring around the (fictional) French gourmand, Dodin Bouffaunt (Benoit Magimel), and his invaluable partner in the kitchen, cook-slash-object-of-affection, Eugénie (Juliette Binoche). From what we’ve heard about the film so far, as well as beautifully depicting the love story between Chef Bouffant and Eugénie, Hùng’s filmmaking also effectively romances its food and preparation. From VIFF: “The Pot-au-Feu is so beautifully composed you can almost taste it: the mise-en-scene evokes Impressionist paintings, but the camera is agile and alive to the energy and dynamics of the kitchen. And for all its attention to process, the film reveals that this is itself a sublime consummation.”
Now that we’ve piqued your appetites, here’s how you can sate them at this year’s fest: The Pot-au-Feu so far has three VIFF screenings planned – all at the Vancouver Playhouse – including one in the coveted slot as the final film: Saturday, October 7th at 6pm, and October 8th at 3:15pm and 9:15pm (closing gala presentation). What better way to end 11 days of gorging on cinema than by busting your gut and indulging your senses with a veritable filmic feast?! Although, with a running time slightly exceeding the two-hour mark, featuring delicious food aplenty, making sure your belly is literally well-fed beforehand is highly recommended (sorry, but even the best/biggest/butteriest theatre popcorn probably won’t do the trick). More info and link to purchase tickets here.
Stay tuned for Scout’s full VIFF 2023 “plan of attack” soon…