Told through a trio of loosely connected stories, Coffee explores human relationships through the drink that wakes the world up in the morning.
In Italy, out-of-work barista Renzo (Dario Aita), desperate to find a job doing what he loves, becomes ensnared in a roasting factory heist. In Belgium, pawnshop owner Hamed (Hichem Yacoubi, A Prophet) is attacked one night by protesters who steal an antique coffee urn, resulting in a tense life-or-death struggle that mirrors Europe’s current immigration anxieties. In China, Ren Fei’s (Fangsheng Lu), allegiance to his employer and future father-in-law is tested when their chemical plant jeopardizes the coffee plantations in his hometown. Especially when a local young artist (Zhuo Tan), shares with her a bold scheme to expand her father’s eco-friendly coffee farm.
Filmed across different continents and languages, Cristiano Bortone’s feature is also the first ever Italian co-production with China. Citing Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu’s 2006 Oscar-winner Babel as inspiration, Bortone’s Coffee is a panoramic snapshot of a globalised world in the grip of cultural and economic turbulence.