The tale of an eccentric band of culinary ronin who guide the widow of a noodle shop owner on her quest for the perfect recipe, this rapturous “ramen western” by Japanese director Juzo Itami is an entertaining, genre-bending adventure underpinned by a deft satire of the way social conventions distort the most natural of human urges, our appetites. Interspersing the efforts of Tampopo (Nobuko Miyamoto) and friends to make her café a success with the erotic exploits of a gastronome gangster and glimpses of food culture both high and low, the sweet, sexy, and surreal Tampopo is a lavishly inclusive paean to the sensual joys of nourishment, and one of the most mouthwatering examples of food on film ever made.
The Making of “Tampopo,” a ninety-minute documentary from 1986, narrated by director Juzo Itami
New interview with actor Nobuko Miyamoto
•New interviews with ramen scholar Hiroshi Osaki; food stylist Seiko Ogawa; and American chefs Sam White, Raynell De Guzman, Jerry Jaksich, and Anthony Bourdain
Rubber Band Pistol, Itami’s 1962 debut short film
New video essay by Tony Zhou and Taylor Ramos on the film’s themes of self-improvement and mastery of a craft
An essay by food and culture writer Willy Blackmore