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Soul Kitchen

Submitted by admin on November 24, 2024 – 4:53 pmNo Comment

Let me sleep all night in your Soul Kitchen the Doors sung back in the days of vinyl. A new film from German director Fatih Akin, Soul Kitchen updates that mood for today’s Hamburg and twenty-four hour party people coming together in a restaurant that’s likely to be in full rock mode with gourmet cooking.

Akin’s previous films are hard hitting reality based confrontational narratives so Soul Kitchen wafts across as a satirical breeze. The tone’s always upbeat even though the various characters have heavy psychological baggage. Even though Soul Kitchen’s an ensemble piece populated by cool hipster chicks and dudes the restaurant is the brain child of Zinos and actor Adam Bousdoukos plays Zinos to the hilt, with a slipped disc and obsessive tendencies.

The kitchen in Soul Kitchen serves up irreverent humor and culinary smarts in equal servings. Zinos hires a chef who’s been fired from a previous job because of his temperament. Zinos’ brother is just out of prison and a likely bartender cum DJ. Zinos’ g.f. is on assignment in China and only checks in via Skype, and meanwhile other characters stir the pot.

There some similarity to Tampopo in one sequence where Shayn the chef dusts some mousse desert with the shavings of tree bark that creates an aphrodisiacal sensation. One particularly endearing scene has Shayn taking regular kitchen throwaways - crushed french fries arranged in balls around a plate of fish strips arranged in star wings, with some ketchup and mayo mixed sauce dribbled over same – and charges 40-Euros for the delicacy. There’s probably a tiny bit of Ratatouille and Big Night mixed in with the ingredients. Soul Kitchen also employs a wall to wall urban soundtrack.

Soul Kitchen plays this week at the MFAH at nights.

- Michael Bergeron

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