About this film
The latest Free Press documentary “Coldwater Kitchen” is about mouthwatering food, bountiful gardens and exquisitely prepared meals — an unexpected lens through which to tell the story of incarceration in America. Everybody eats, but there are few places where food is as purposeful and necessary as it is inside chef Jimmy Lee Hill’s confounding high-end kitchen surrounded by razor wire. For 30 years, soft-spoken chef Hill has run a highly regarded culinary training program out of a prison in Coldwater, Mich., offering incarcerated men a renewed sense of purpose through the craft of fine dining while demonstrating the life-changing potential that trust and compassion can offer the incarcerated. As we watch the prison’s bountiful garden cycle through Michigan’s four seasons, we follow Hill and three of his students as they struggle to adapt to different stages of incarceration, re-entry and redemption using food as a catalyst for positive change. Michigan premiere.
AFTER THE FILM: On Wednesday, Nancy Kaffer, Free Press editorial page editor, talks with co-director Mark Kurlyandchik, chef Jimmy Lee, Daqwan Sistrunk (also known as chef Dink), Hugh Leonard (brother of Brad Leonard, who is in the film) and Kimberly Buddin, senior policy counsel at the ACLU’s justice division, for a conversation about the film, Hill’s culinary program and the criminal justice system.
DINNER AND A MOVIE, APRIL 28, 29 & 30: The April 28, 29 & 30 events are being presented as part of the “Dinner and a Movie” collaboration at Frame. The screening will be paired with dinner from chefs featured in the documentary. (SOLD OUT)