CSUN to Hold Sneak Preview of ‘Let Them Eat Cake,’ an Exploration of the Perils and Pleasures of Pastry

Traditional Japanese pastry from Mannendou Bakery, Tokyo, used in a Chano-yu ceremony. Photo credit: Yasumi Miyazawa.

Traditional Japanese pastry from Mannendou Bakery, Tokyo, used in a Chano-yu ceremony. Photo credit: Yasumi Miyazawa.

“Let Them Eat Cake,” the latest documentary by award-winning California State University, Northridge film professor Alexis Krasilovsky, takes a global view of the perils and pleasures of pastry.

The public is invited to join CSUN students, faculty and staff for a special sneak preview of the film at 7:30 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 14, in the Elaine and Alan Armer Theater in Manzanita Hall near the southwest corner of the campus at 18111 Nordhoff St. in Northridge.

What makes the world of pastry making and consumption so dark? How can something that is a sweet expression of cultural values and love make you sick and, in come cases, even kill you? “Let Them Eat Cake” explores the answers to both those questions by focusing on issues such as diabetes, obesity and hunger.

“Meeting filmmakers at festivals around the world compelled me to think transnationally and transculturally while making ‘Let Them Eat Cake,’ said Krasilovsky, who was joined by co-producers Sanjoy Ghosh of India and Hamidou Soumah, who teaches international cinema at CSUN, and unit directors from many other countries. “By working together, I believe our film will have the strongest possible impact in addressing the world hunger crisis.”

“Let Them Eat Cake” is a shorter version of the award-winning documentary, “Pastriology,” which Krasilovsky made about the world of pastry-making and consumption. Both movies take a global perspective of the subject and were filmed in such countries as Japan, Mexico, Peru, India, Bangladesh, Turkey, France and the United States. The film illustrates its points by showing how pastry makers in France decorate their lavish cakes and pastries in affluent neighborhood shops, while in India sugarcane workers toil in the hot sun and in the Republic of Guinea children pick cocoa pods on their families’ plantations.  For more information, see http://pastriology.com.

The evening will begin with a pre-screening reception at 6:30 p.m. The 7:30 p.m. screening will be followed by a panel discussion at 8:30 p.m. While the screening is free, reservations are recommended. To make a reservation, email camc@csun.edu or call (818) 677-2246. Parking on campus is $6. Daily parking permits may be purchased as booths or online at www.thepermitstore.com/csun/event.

Krasilovsky, who wrote, directed and co-produced “Let Them Eat Cake” and “Pastriology,” teaches screenwriting and media theory and criticism in CSUN’s Department of Cinema and Television Arts. She is the winner of the 2011 Gdańsk DocFilm Festival lifetime achievement award and the Tribute Award “for achievements in independent cinema” from the 2008 San Francisco Women’s Film Festival. Her other films include “Women Behind the Camera,” about women cinematographers around the world and winner of five best documentary awards; “End of the Art World,” starring Andy Warhol and Robert Rauschenberg; “Just Between Me & God,” an environmental love story from West Memphis, Ark., and “Beale Street,” a video about the street where Martin Luther King last marched before his assassination.

The screening is co-sponsored by CSUN’s Departments of Cinema and Television Arts, Journalism and Pan-African Studies; the American Indian Studies Program; the Marilyn Magaram Center for Food Science, Nutrition and Dietetics; and Phi Beta Delta, the honor society for international scholars.

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