Consider the white Alba truffle… its colour, size and shape… It’s still moist? Bene. Lean in, waft the air, savour that unparalleled, ecstatic pungency… If you’re unreasonably wealthy you may even taste a few shavings, for this may be the most expensive condiment in cuisine (last season, over $200 per ounce).
The white truffle only grows in the wild, in northern Italy, and always under the ground, so you need a trained dog to root them out. And this is the true heart of Michael Dweck and Gregory Kershaw’s sublime movie, not so much the truffle itself - though fungi fetishists will surely be sated on that score - but the relationship between the old men (they all seem to be ancient) who guard the secrets of the truffle patches - and their sniffer dogs, who may be the only beings on earth who truly know them. Exquisitely, rhapsodically photographed (sometimes by the dogs themselves), this is the rare nonfiction film that looks like a work of art. The Truffle Hunters evokes a lingering netherworld from times past, a place of dignity, personality and unforgettable flavour.
Michael Dweck, Gregory Kershaw
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Michael Dweck is an award-winning filmmaker and visual artist known for his narrative photographic and film projects. His work depicts the beauty and intricacy of human life, in mediums ranging from photography and sculpture to film and sound. His notable photographic series include: The End: Montauk, N.Y., Mermaids, and Habana Libre. His directorial debut, the feature documentary, The Last Race, premiered at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival.
Photo: ©Henry Leutwyler
The Last Race (2018)
Gregory Kershaw was a producer and director of photography on The Last Race (2018). Previously, he directed documentaries on environmental issues, including a series of short films funded by the United Nation Foundation that explored the impact of climate change on indigenous groups in remote parts of Latin America. He was also the lead producer and director on long-form TV documentaries exploring the current global species extinction crisis, featuring luminaries like Jane Goodall and Sylvia Earle.
Photo: ©Clément Morin