Saturday, April 17, 2021

Movie Review: The Truffle Hunters


Michael's Movie Grade: B+

Engrossing documentary that even entertains those with no interest in the subject. 

I have never eaten truffles, smell truffles or to my knowledge been exposed to them in any way. While this film will not change that fact, I found myself thoroughly entertained. The main charm in this film comes from our main subjects, the truffle hunters themselves. These are mostly old men in their 70's and 80's, who are very unique and entertaining individuals. Though one of them is quitting the game, there are two that are still just as passionate as they must have been when they were young. One is a married man whose wife can't understand why he is still doing this at 87 and another is a single man from whom truffle hunting has become his whole life. These provide fascinating looks at what individuals who would do something like this for a living are like. Even though I would never have any interest in this, I found myself moved by seeing this pure passion for life still in men in their 80's. I hope when I reach that age my passion for life will be this strong. The man who wants to leave the game is completely and utterly entertaining. One of his best moments comes when he is writing a letter to younger generations and talks about undressing a woman. This is dirty joke telling at its finest and it definitely made me laugh out loud. This movie paints these men as a dying bread and while that has no real effect on most of our lives, when you watch these men's passion for life you can understand the sadness of this. 

Where this film didn't work for me were the scenes with the selling of these truffles and with where truffles are enjoyed. There was no appeal to the places and events at which these truffles where enjoyed to me. They all felt completely pretentious, stuffy and cold. In other words places I would avoid any chances I get. The way the film presented these places and events somehow made them even more unappealing. Whenever these scenes came up I was hoping that the movie would go back to the old men. To me these scenes gave a strange coldness and stiffness to a film that is otherwise a lot of fun. 

Overall this is a documentary on a world completely foreign to me, yet I found myself enjoying it a lot.   

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