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Scottsdale International Film Festival
Japanese Culture Club of Arizona proud to sponsor
Japanese Film Screening
"LE CHOCOLAT DE H"
Saturday, November 2, 2019
11:55 AM –
Venue: Harkins Shea 14 Theatre
7354 East Shea Boulevard, Auditorium 1
Scottsdale, AZ 8526
Japan on the World Stage: Society, Influence, Education
Lecture by James Baskind, Ph.D
Wednesday, November 20, 2019
11:30 PM – 1:15 PM
Lunch & Networking 11:30 AM - 12:00 PM
Venue: ASU Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law, Room 601
111 E Taylor Street, Phoenix, AZ 85004
The Phoenix Committee on Foreign Relations.
More info and registration: https://www.pcfraz.org/event-3527256
IJames Baskind, Ph.D, Before returning to the US last year, James Baskind, Ph.D. (Yale, 2006), was most recently associate professor of Japanese Thought at Nagoya City University, Nagoya, Japan. He is now Directing Manager of Arizona Japan Network LLC, which is focused on building infrastructure for Japanese-directed hospitality services and collaborative initiatives between Arizona and Japanese industries.
When you think of artisanal chocolate-making, you might not think of Japan, but Hironobu Tsujiguchi could be the greatest living exponent of the art. And he does consider it an art—as much a vehicle for personal expression as a poem or a song—as Takashi Watanabe's documentary demonstrates. (The film takes its title from the name of Tsujiguchi's shop in Tokyo's Ginza district.) We follow him as he prepares for Paris's annual Salon du Chocolat by searching out and incorporating the staples of traditional Japanese cuisine—sea salt, miso, mirin, rice flour, tea-plant stems—in honor of his heritage and specifically of his father, also a confectioner. (This backstory is told through charming re-enactments of his childhood memories, including his first culinary epiphany, a taste of whipped cream.) From these up-to-date experiments, Tsujiguchi also travels backwards, visiting Ecuador to sample the very pods on the cacao trees and share the end result, his award-winning jewel-like bonbons, with children in a nearby village. This isn't a drama-filled story of a talented newbie clawing his way to the top—Tsujiguchi has already won five Salon gold medals and is hoping for a sixth—but rather a lyrical portrait of an artist, loco about cocoa and treating ganache with panache, who has exquisitely and innovatively married Japanese aesthetics to one of the West's most adored treats. ~ Seattle International Film Festival.