COVID-19 Update

Based on the latest recommendations re: Novel Coronavirus/COVID-19 from the⁣⁣ Chief Medical Officer of Ottawa Public Health, the ByTowne is closed. ⁣⁣
If you have tickets to any of our upcoming events, we will be offering refunds or exchanges. More info as soon as we work out some details.

For updates, we will notify movie fans on this web site, and via Cinemail, our e-mail 'reminder'.
(To subscribe to Cinemail, close this box by clicking on the [x] in the corner and look for the black sign-up box near the bottom of our home page.)⁣⁣

We're not going anywhere, so we encourage you to spend some of your movie budget on supporting local charities, like food banks and shelters. (Though, we are selling still vouchers by mail/e-transfer; please see our 'Gift Voucher' section on our 'About Us' page.)

Thank you all for your support and we hope to see you very soon!

(Updated April 20)



Like Water For Chocolate

(Como agua para chocolate)

Must-See Cinema! A delicious combination of food, passion and magic!

Poster art for Like Water For ChocolatePlease note: Your printed ByTowne Guide indicates two shows for Like Water For Chocolate, but the screening on Tuesday, March 17 has been cancelled. Sorry for any inconvenience.

Based on Laura Esquivel’s best-selling novel and directed by her then-husband Alfonso Arau, Like Water For Chocolate is the tale of a family of Mexican women headed by the tyrannical Mama Elena (Torné). Mama Elena thwarts the budding romance of her daughter Tita (Cavazos) by insisting that, as the youngest daughter, she follow tradition and forsake marriage to stay home and care for her mother – until death does them part. Salting the wound, Mama Elena offers Tita’s suitor her oldest daughter’s hand instead, and he accepts, believing it to be the only way he can be close to his true love.

Tita, having no other outlet for her passion, abandons herself to the culinary arts. As she prepares her sister’s nuptial banquet, her tears fall into the wedding cake, infusing it with such sorrow that all who eat it begin weeping uncontrollably. It is the beginning of the long and mystical relationship Tita has with food and its preparation.

Though the film is set in northern Mexico in the early 1900s, it possesses such immediacy we are able to savour the unfamiliar flavours of the piece without cultural or temporal distancing. It is consuming, with beautiful performances, masterful direction and intricate detail woven cunningly into a simple but compelling story. Throughout the movie, Tita asserts that the only special ingredient in her recipes is the love with which she prepares them. This real life couple’s collaborative effort is graced with that ingredient and imbued with rare alchemy. It’s a privilege to partake of such a feast.

– Hollis Chacona, The Austin Chronicle

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