14 Feb Soul Kitchen by Fatih Akin
In cooperation with the Goethe-Zentrum in Tirana
Directed by Fatih Akin
99 min – 2009
In German with English subtitles
Fatih Akin, the director of “Head-On” and “The Edge of Heaven”, presents a boisterous comedy. A German-Greek restaurateur is forced to defend his bistro, “Soul Kitchen”, against property sharks, tax authorities and his gambling-addicted brother when it becomes one of Hamburg’s trendy locations.
Cast: Adam Bousdoukos, Moritz Bleibtreu, Birol Ünel, Anna Bederke…
Synopsis: The “Soul Kitchen” in Wilhelmsburg in Hamburg is anything but a gourmet restaurant. The German-Greek owner Zinos (Adam Bousdoukos) dishes up fishcakes and potato salad, Hawaiian hamburgers and pasta bake to his regulars. It’s a charming local bistro situated in a former industrial building where there’s always great music to be heard, whether soul, funk or Greek folk music. Then Zinos finds himself in the soup. His girlfriend Nadine (Pheline Roggan), a frosty beauty from a wealthy family, leaves for Shanghai to work as a foreign correspondent. Zinos suffers a slipped disk as he tries to manoeuvre a washing machine. The tax office demands long-overdue payments. An official from the public health department threatens to close the whole thing down. The eccentric new chef Shayn (Birol Ünel) cooks mouth-watering dishes but drives away the regulars. The property shark Neumann (Wotan Wilke Möhring) pressures Zinos to sell him the bistro.
By a stroke of good luck, a music school opens up next door and the new customers delight in Shayn’s cooking. Suddenly the situation takes a turn for the better and the “Soul Kitchen” becomes a trendy spot. But this happiness doesn’t last long; Nadine finds herself a new lover and breaks up with Zinos, while Zinos’s brother Illias (Moritz Bleibtreu), who has just been promoted to the manager of “Soul Kitchen”, gambles the restaurant away to the speculator Neumann. All seems lost until Zinos discovers new love and a chance to win back the “Soul Kitchen”.