“Breaking Bread” opens with a quote by Anthony Bourdain, who speak that “food may not be the answer to world peace, but it’s a start.” The basic premise for this documentary, directed by Beth Elise Hawk, is that all cultures can unite through the spectacle of delicious food on camera.
The film follows preparations for the 2017 A-Sham Festival in Haifa, Israel, an event that celebrates the cuisine of an area where geopolitical boundaries are more clearly defined than culinary. At the beginning of the film, the festival’s founder, Dr. Nof Atamna-Ismaeel, identifies himself as a Muslim, an Arab, an Israeli, a Palestinian, a woman, a scientist and a chef (she won the Israeli version of “MasterChef” a few years ago). She says in the film that borders “mean nothing for hummus.”
The contestants live in Israel but come from a variety of backgrounds. At the festival, they are often paired with someone from a different origin than their own to create a designated dish. For example, Ali Khattib, from an Alawite village in the Golan Heights, and Shlomi Meir, who runs an Eastern European restaurant in Haifa, made a traditional Syrian soup with a filling of bulgur wheat soaked in water. yogurt.
A lot of the comments in “Breaking Bread” – the repeated notions that food is a lingua franca or that politics has no place in the kitchen – seem cliché and perhaps overly optimistic. Ideally, the movie will be shown with the accompanying tasting menu.
Not rated. Running time: 1 hour 25 minutes. In the theater.
https://www.nytimes.com/2022/02/03/movies/breaking-bread-review.html Review ‘Breaking Bread’: Peaceful Meal