Movies for Foodies
by Liana Turner
Movie reviewing is not normally my "thing",- so I will not be starting now. I would, however, like to share with you some of the most memorable movies that are about food, centered on food, or at least have food in them. I'm sure there are others worth noting, but I don't want to recommend something I haven't seen myself.
If you can't find the movies in a local rental store, you can find just about anything online to download. How about a film festival dedicated to food movies? How fun would that be?
Babette's Feast: Shows what can happen when a real woman comes to town and shakes up the sensibilities of the puritans. Beautiful food! Beautiful film!
Big Night: Some loveable guys are trying to promote their restaurant and compete with the popular (but not as good) restaurant nearby. Louis Prima is supposed to show up, which is meant to bring the big crowds that they need to reach the success that they deserve.
Chocolat: Okay, it's about chocolate, and Johnny Depp is a river gypsy in France. What more could you possibly want?
Eat Man Drink Woman: Chinese Family movie. Lovely
Fried Green Tomatoes: A classic heartwarming movie. Try the green tomatoes. Stay away from the ribs.
Like Water for Chocolate: This, for me, was one of those rare films that I enjoyed as much as the book. Set in Mexico. There is a lot of heat in this one---heat from cooking, from fire, from passion and magic. When I left the theatre, the lipstick that was in my purse was melted. No joke.
Our Daily Bread: A documentary about the mass production of food. Very interesting and well done. Has won several awards. There is no narration or discernable dialogue. All we hear are the hissing, grinding, whooshing and other sounds from the machinery that processes the tons and tons of food that feed the world. It is an industry that treats all as equals. Plants and animals are treated as inanimate objects, even though they tend to stray and squirm. Baby pigs are put into a castrating machine and tossed out as if they are machined parts on an assembly line. It is amazing, shocking, interesting. Left me wanting to be a vegetarian for a while.
Ratatouille: Animated film. Not the greatest movie ever made, but a diversion. How often does a rat get to be a celebrated chef? (See Hell's Kitchen, below)
Reservations: This was an okay movie. People who are not in the food industry liked it a lot more that those of us who are. It was quite unrealistic. Katherine Zeta-Jones is a chef who walks home after a long day and night behind the line, wearing a designer coat and high heels, looking fresh as a daisy. That would never happen in real life.
Supersize Me: Another documentary. This one is about a guy who eats nothing but food from McDonalds for an entire month. See what happens when you live on crap. I can hear my arteries hardening just thinking about it.
The Cook, the Thief, His Wife and Her Lover: Can't really remember much about this one, but I remember that I liked it and it takes place in a restaurant.
9 ½ Weeks: Mickey Rourke explores his sexuality. One of the most famous scenes is in the kitchen in front of an open refrigerator. No wonder Mom always said, "Don't play with your food".- It is messy.