Video Services Corp., presents
The turbulent soul of the world’s best chef and kitchen is plated and served in
Noma: My Perfect Storm, directed by Pierre Deschamps
Opens in Toronto
Bloor Hot Docs Cinema – 506 Bloor St. W.
Also available on Video on Demand and iTunes Dec 18
Director Pierre Deschamps is available for interviews by phone
The story of Copenhagen’s quirky Nordic-based restaurant/global-phenomenon Noma resembles a Hollywood overnight-star story – with shocking victory, pressure, doubt, fall from grace and redemption. Noma: My Perfect Storm opens in Toronto at the Bloor Hot Docs Cinema and On Demand and iTunes Dec 18, from Video Services Corp.
A once-ridiculed experiment by chef René Redzepi, the resto and its free-associative menu of Nordic-based cooking – marked by an eclectic assortment of native vegetables with “meat as the backup singer” – was serving “crowds” of 15 when word of Redzepi’s innovation began to spread.
What followed was an unlikely rocket to the top of Pelegrino’s famed 50 Best Restaurants list, and a four-time stint as “the best restaurant in the world.” And then some things happened.
Pierre Deschamps’ Noma: My Perfect Storm is a remarkable documentary, a 33-month fly-on-the-wall experience of a restaurant and its resident genius on top of the world, losing their balance and attempting to right themselves.
Noma provides a busy plate of events and insights, from the complex psychological profile of its central character – a mercurial, Macedonian-born chef with an outsider’s chip on his shoulder – to the eccentric outside characters (including a Swedish mushroom expert and a Scottish sea urchin harvester) whose provisions inspire some of Redzepi’s wilder culinary visions.
But the central narrative is the rough journey of a small team of epicurean artists dealing with life under the world’s microscope. Michelin stars are won and lost. Top spot at Pellegrino is suddenly not a given.
There is an outbreak of food poisoning, and Redzepi and his acolytes suddenly find themselves questioning their priorities and seek to rediscover their joy.
Deschamps, a filmmaker from a “foodie” French family, was in the process of shooting a documentary called Looking North for a Gastronomic Revolution when he encountered Redzepi in 2007.
“I shot in the Noma kitchen and felt that this young man was about to shake the gastronomic world, based on a dogma of limitation – using only Nordic Raw ingredients,” he says.
“I reached out to him in 2011 with my idea of filming what was going on in the mind of the chef behind Noma – trying to understand his creative process, his past, his influences and philosophy. While doing so, I have always tried to respect the teams’ intimacy in the kitchen. I rarely get ‘in their faces’ with the camera. I was a quiet observer, and it was key to capturing, unadulterated, the ups and downs, the joys and traumas of the world’s best kitchen.”
About Video Services Corp.
Founded in 1993 by former rock critic Jonathan Gross, Video Services Corp. (VSC) is a leading independent all-platform film distributor with offices in Toronto and Los Angeles. VSC’s DVD catalogue includes “Corner Gas,” Sharknado, “Richard Lewis: Bundle of Nerves,” and Don Cherry’s Rock’em Sock’em Hockey series. Recent theatrical releases include Frank, starring Michael Fassbender, Alan Partridge, starring Steve Coogan, Iranian vampire sensation A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night, Cannes Selection Life Itself, and instant cult classic What We Do In The Shadows. Upcoming releases include TIFF 2015 Grolsch People’s Choice Documentary Award first runner-up This Changes Everything, and 2015 Berlinale Golden Bear winner Jafar Panahi’s Taxi.
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