The Media Resources Center offers a selection of films on food based in and around the Triangle.
APPETIZER: Un Buen Carnicero
Un Buen Carnicero (A Good Butcher) takes us inside the hustle and bustle at Cliff’s Meat Market on July 3rd as customers stock up for their Independence Day celebrations. Owner Cliff Collins has sliced up meat for the local community for more than 40 years, but as changing demographics led to more and more customers asking for cuts of meat in Spanish, Cliff hired Tolo Martinez to help him out. For 18+ years, Tolo has loyally helped all sorts of patrons find exactly what they want, always with a smile on his face. And yet, he often feels trapped. Set against the backdrop of the holiday that touts America’s love of freedom, this film and its main protagonist question whether that freedom is readily available to all or only when it is convenient.
ENTRÉE: The Harvest
“The cotton plants when I was ten looked like skyscrapers . . .” Director U. Robert Romano follows three children, presenting their stories as they navigate things typically associated with childhood – making friends, arguing with their siblings, worrying about school. And he presents a few that are not – consistently moving and having to work. This compelling vérité film focuses on third generation child migrant workers as they labor with their parents in fields across the US, including Asheville NC. The children’s work substantially contributes to each of their family’s subsistence.
Victor, an engaging 16-year-old, is forced to choose daily between school and work. Extremely devoted to his family, Victor inevitably opts for work. As he protectively walks his little sisters to the school bus, Victor rationalizes that they will be well fed and cared for while he picks and hauls more than 1,500 pounds of tomatoes that will only earn him a day’s wage of $60.
Twelve-year-old Zulema, who began picking strawberries when she was a scant seven years old, wonders if she’ll ever make it to high school. Every time she gets settled in to a new school, she must move yet again. Perla Sanchez dreams of becoming a lawyer, but she is continually pulled from school to join her family on the road as they travel from farm to farm looking for work. The earnest reflections from these children and their parents will quickly take root, leaving you to ponder the produce you purchase.
DESSERT: Meet a couple of NC homegrown, super delicious bakeries right next door in Durham. If you haven’t been to either of these places yet, you’ll want to go after watching these clips.
Dive into more films and documentaries in the collection of the Media Resources Center on baking and discover even more in this finding aid for UNC’s libary.