For a city congested with new film festivals that crop up each summer, this one actually sounded like a novelty: The first-ever New York City Food Film Festival takes off this June, screening independent features and shorts by filmmakers from all over the country. The event seems to be the brainchild of Schnack co-conspirator Harry Hawk and George Motz, a director who’s screening his documentary, Hamburger America, in the festival.
If I’m understanding correctly, the festival takes place over three weekends, offering a virtual three-course meal in theme: Part 1 is Hamburgers and Asparagus; Part 2, Hot Dogs and Sausages; and Part 3, Barbecue. Films being screened include fun food docs like American Beer, Asparagus (the Stalkumentary), Living on the Wedge: Wisconsin’s Artisan Cheesemakers, and Best of the Wurst, a doc about Berlin’s currywurst that’s directed, interestingly enough, by Grace Lee of The Grace Lee Project.
But there’s one catch: while the film screenings are supposedly free, you have to “buy tickets” by ordering your food online first. Doesn’t look like there’s an option for people who don’t eat out. I’ve never been out to Water Taxi Beach, where the festival will be held and Schnack’s official summer luau. But it does seem as if it operates very much like a restaurant since you can’t bring in outside food or drink and you have to pay a small fee to get in at night.
Okay… so no movies if you don’t want to eat Schnackburgers? That doesn’t seem to make any sense. Well, I wasn’t sure how I felt about hamburgers with asparagus anyway.