‘Life's Banquet': The Norton Simon Museum to screen classic foodie films

Summer Saturdays are getting especially sup-worthy at the Pasadena destination.

Samuel Goldwyn Company / Photofest

What to Know

  • Norton Simon Museum in Pasadena
  • Saturdays, July 8-Aug. 5, 2023 inside the museum theater
  • Included with museum admission

Movies and snacks go together like a projector and film, a swelling soundtrack and an emotional moment, and a great script and a luminous star.

But sometimes the food we're enjoying appears on the screen, specifically in those cinematic works of art that put the hankering-filled focus on the joys of the table, and a few of the dramas, too.

The Norton Simon Museum in Pasadena is a perfect place to celebrate the pleasures and pastimes of the palate. After all, the iconic institution is filled with food imagery, with all sorts of comestibles, brought to life by paint and a brush, depicted along its storied walls.

Added to the museum's year-round devotion to dining imagery?

"All Consuming: Art and the Essence of Food" is the headlining exhibition on view at the Norton Simon through Aug. 14, 2023.

But there's more: The museum is adding a heaping helping of spice to the show by screening five foodie-strong films over five summer Saturdays. "Life's Banquet," the name of the series, will honor a quintet of cuisine-centered works from the last century.

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Up on July 8? It's "Babette's Feast," the '80s-era charmer about community and transformative cuisine. The silent film "The Last Laugh" is up on July 15, the acclaimed 2020 film "Minari" is the July 22 selection, and "Tortilla Soup," a moving 2001 tale of a father and daughters, rounds out the month on July 29.

Agnès Varda's "The Gleaners and I," the final film of the series, will shimmer on Aug. 5.

Your entry to the afternoon films, which all have a start time of 4:30 p.m., is included with your Norton Simon admission.

Adding to the appetizing nature of the event? The museum's Garden Cafe is open through 5 p.m., meaning you can have a quick bite before taking your seat inside the Norton Simon theater.

Pictured: Tortilla Soup (2001), directed by María Ripoll. Shown from left: Elizabeth Peña, Tamara Mello, Jacqueline Obradors

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