Tampopo

Co-presented by Ways & Means

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A bowl of ramen consists of various ingredients: shinachiku roots, pork, spring onions. However, in order to obtain the true essence of the dish, you must observe the whole bowl first. Jûzô Itami’s Tampopo is a gastro-lucid, pygmalion-esque “Ramen-Western”—a visual, culinary cornucopia where food, life, death, and sex simmer into one singular broth. On the film’s glossy surface, it’s a slow cooked tale about two slick truckers who act as svengalis to a struggling noodle shop owner, yet, much like chopsticks rotating through the soup, Tampopo throws out parallel storylines like pinches of flavor-enhancing salt. The main ingredients include: a symphony of noodle slurping at an etiquette class, a stylish gangster and his partner passing egg yolk back and forth mid-kiss, and a store owner trying to catch a habitual “Food-Fondler.” Heavily influenced by genre-visionaries like Sergio Leone, Itami’s absurdist and downright Dada-inflected scenes also follow the leads of Luis Bunuel and Robert Downey Sr.—good down to the last slurp, and on our menu for one night only!

Dir. Jûzô Itami, 1985, DCP, 114 min.

Watch the trailer!