Soul Kitchen (2009)

Directed by Fatih Akin

In Hamburg, German-Greek chef Zinos unknowingly disturbs the peace in his locals-only restaurant by hiring a more talented chef.

As someone who was recently there, Soul Kitchen really captures that anaemic renewed warehouse vibe of postindustrial Hamburg… and it's to its credit that this film doesn't attempt to romanticise the city's pallid hue and rather worn-out architecture and public infrastructure. Still, the comedy at the heart of the film feels derivative and juvenile, even bordering on cringe (or at least caricature) in what it considers "super cool". What was with that rip-off Angus Young? Anyway, as a counterweight to the Berlin-centric nature of German cinema, Soul Kitchen should be applauded, of course, but films of this nature probably actually end up reinforcing the status quo rather than addressing it.