Caffeinated, written and directed by Vishal Solanki and Hanh Nguyen is a leisurely examination of the social connections formed by and about coffee. Coming out on July 14, the film is a meditation on coffee and connection. It features coffee shop owners, baristas, coffee tasters, farmers, and buyers talking about their role in coffee production and the way it has shaped their lives. They frequently talk of the way it connects people, sometimes briefly at the neighborhood shop, sometimes in a longer-term connection between buyers and growers. Some of the roasters learned from their parents how to roast, and many of the baristas plan to ultimately open their own shops.
For a short time, Caffeinated was exasperating as the focus on smiling people seemed to ignore the troubles many farmers and pickers face. However, throughout the film Solanki and Nguyen are talking about connections between coffee buyers and growers, eventually focusing on direct efforts being made to ensure that pickers and growers both get fair prices, to set up a scenario where everyone has a reason to stay involved. Particularly interesting are the short interviews with women of SOPPEXCCA, a cooperative founded in Nicaragua and producing Las Hermanas Coffee.
Caffeinated is a beautiful film to watch. The scenes shift from one place to another, from one speaker to the next, lingering on faces and providing long, loving shots of coffee being roasted, brewed, and served. You are likely to want to talk to some of these people, and you are almost certain to want a cup of coffee. In fact, it is an excellent film to watch on a restful Saturday morning while drinking a cup.
Nationwide Release Date: July 14
In select theaters and iTunes, Amazon, googleplay, Xbox, vudu and all major cable providers including Time Warner, Comcast, directv and more.
Directed by: Vishal Solanki, Hanh Nguyen
Produced by: Vishal Solanki, Hanh Nguyen
Writers: Hanh Nguyen, Vishal Solanki
Exec Producers: Vinay Gandhi, Romit Patel, Cassandra Gava
Edited By:Hanh Nguyen, Christopher Roth
Cinematography By: Vishal Solanki
Runtime: 80 Minutes
MPAA Rating: Unrated