Playing at the Mead on Friday, November 30: Himself He Cooks
by AMNH on
Making its U.S. premiere at the Museum’s 2012 Margaret Mead Film Festival, Himself He Cooks chronicles a day in the life of the Golden Temple of Amritsar, India, where every day tens of thousands of visitors are fed by hundreds of volunteers.
Filmmakers Valerie Berteau and Philippe Wotjes chose to forego dialogue, creating a stunning visual essay about the ancient Sikh traditions of langar, or free kitchen, and seva, voluntary participation.
From potato pickers at dawn to chefs stirring bubbling cauldrons of lentil soup to the men and women rolling out flatbread, there is an exuberant, assembly-line efficiency to the operation, punctuated by the smiles of both the volunteers and the diners who arrive in a constant stream of saffron, plum, and other vibrant saris, turbans, and robes.
But this is more than a story of food; it is a story of community. We learn it is “the Lord Himself” who cooks and that in this place, at this meal, caste, gender, and religion are of no consequence. All are equally welcome to work and to share.
Filmmakers Berteau and Wotjes, nominees for this year’s Margaret Mead Filmmaker Award, will attend the screening and stay for a discussion with the audience. The screening will be followed by a reception and dance party in the Dorothy and Lewis B. Cullman Hall of the Universe with DJ Rehka, free with a ticket stub to any 2012 Mead screening.
To purchase tickets and learn more about the film, showing at 8:30 pm on Friday, November 30, click here.