That first "F" in SIFF stands for film, not food, but there's plenty of onscreen eating at the festival to entertain the culinary-minded moviegoer. As a supplement to Seattle Weekly's coverage of the Seattle International Film Festival, Voracious will again this year highlight the program's films of particular interest to those viewers who spend more time in dining rooms than screening rooms.
For viewers willing to screen-hop, SIFF this weekend has interspersed a trio of surreal food quickies into its shorts programs:
Filmmakers Alisa Lapidus and Natasha Subramaniam challenge the notion that food slips submissively into decay with their stop-motion chronicle of the the hard-fought battles waged within a refrigerator. Lapidus and Subramaniam spent two years capturing the decomposition of cheese, fruit and fish, then set the images to Sergei Prokofiev's Dance of the Knights, a soundtrack which brings tremendous nobility to the ingredients' struggle to stay fresh and bacteria's drive to overwhelm them. Zergüt has been screened at the Chicago Food Film Festival and was named a winner of the New York Food Film Festival.
Saturday, 9:30 p.m., SIFF Cinema Uptown
More than 8 million people watched video artist PES's 2008 "Western Spaghetti," a visual carnival of stop-motion techniques resurrected in "Fresh Guacamole." In this two-minute film, an unseen cook dices and slices inedible objects that evoke guacamole ingredients. Instead of a lime, a green miniature golf ball is placed in a citrus squeezer, and a light bulb functioning as a jalapeno pepper is chopped into Monopoly houses that get tossed into the mix. The imagery might provoke serious thinkers to muse on what people consider palatable, but most viewers will be swept up in the spare beauty and casual comedy.
Sunday, 11:30 a.m., SIFF Cinema Uptown
Pass the Salt, Please
The well-to-do couple sipping wine over dinner is a familiar trope in highbrow films, but Pass the Salt, Please imagines the standard scene rewritten with smutty dialogue. Here, the middle-aged husband doesn't just ask his wife to pass the honey: He announces he'd like to squeeze the condiment on her breasts. ""I'd lick the honey off your tits," he says deadpan. "How would you like if I took some honey and squirted it all over your dick?," she responds. You get the idea.
Sunday, 9:30 p.m., SIFF Cinema Uptown