Advertisement

A Three Course Comedy Bursting With Flavour

By 30 June 2014 5

I will begin with a warning: Do not go to see this movie on an empty stomach!

chef

Part visual love ode to food, part father/son redemption tale, Jon Favreau’s ‘Chef’ is a film that is very hard not to like.

Think ‘Rocky’ with a cooking knife.

Jon Favreau, director of studio blockbusters ‘Iron Man 1 & 2′, has gone back to his indie roots to create a wickedly clever comedy that delivers both a feast for the senses and nourishment for the soul.

Timeless in its ‘road to redemption’ theme, the plot is defined by a very modern dilemma – what happens next after you commit social media (and career) suicide?

Carl Caspar (Favreau) is a once cutting-edge chef flirting with a mid-life crisis. He is constantly at odds with controlling restaurant owner Riva (Dustin Hoffman). Divorced from his wife, he views his relationship with his son as little more than an inconvenience.

The story heats up early as Carl is forced to serve the same tired old menu to influential food critic Ramsay Michel(Oliver Platt). Quitting his job and goaded by Ramsay Michel’s scathing review, Carl has an epic meltdown that goes viral on social media.

Out of a job, humiliated and unemployable, Caspar is persuaded by his ex-wife (Sophia Vergara) and 11-year old son Percy (Emjay Anthony) to join them on holiday in Miami.  His road to redemption begins as he revamps a food truck and decides to sell Cuban toasted sandwiches.

Driving from Miami back to L.A. with son Percy and former kitchen colleague (John Leguiziamo) as help, Caspar rediscovers his love of cooking and what it really means to be a loving, attentive father.

Whilst ‘Chef’ probably won’t win any awards, it is an immensely enjoyable film. What makes it so damn enjoyable is the wickedly clever plot (no film has portrayed the consequences of social media so effectively) and unassuming, likable characters.

Though there is an array of star cameos (including a scene stealer from Robert Downey Jr), it is the father and son acting performances of Jon Favreau and Emjay Anthony that make this film so memorable.

You can’t help but root for the underdog Caspar it is heart-warming to see him build a special relationship with his son Percy.

The Afro-Cuban soundtrack is outstanding and creates an upbeat tempo and infectious spirit for this film.

Favreau’s passionate and accurate depiction of a chef in action creates a salivating experience. All that chopping, drizzling, melting and sizzling made my mouth water. Numerous whispers of ‘yum’ and ‘ooh’ were uttered by most of my fellow cinema patrons.

Do yourself a favour and watch ‘Chef’ on the big screen before it ends its run. You will thank me and probably reward yourself with a late night feast at Brodburger after the movie like I did.

Score: 8.5/10

Please login to post your comments
5 Responses to
A Three Course Comedy Bursting With Flavour
dungfungus 12:45 pm
30 Jun 14
#1

Good review.
Chef to me was a chic-flick, road movie and social comment on Twitter (and social media generally).
There is a dark side to social media (just ask Todd Carney).
Dustin Hoffman was great. I can still remember him as a young actor in Midnight Cowboy and The Graduate. He has gone the extra 10 yards in his acting career.
I would prefer a Cuban sandwich to a Brodburger.

rosscoact 1:31 pm
30 Jun 14
#2

dungfungus said :

Good review.
Chef to me was a chic-flick, road movie and social comment on Twitter (and social media generally).
There is a dark side to social media (just ask Todd Carney).
Dustin Hoffman was great. I can still remember him as a young actor in Midnight Cowboy and The Graduate. He has gone the extra 10 yards in his acting career.
I would prefer a Cuban sandwich to a Brodburger.

You have gone up a notch in my eyes with that comment

Holden Caulfield 1:52 pm
30 Jun 14
#3

It is a very enjoyable movie, if a little cliched. Not sure I’d described the road movie/redemption plot as “wickedly clever”, even with the twitter plug-in. Though I do agree the film is well worth watching and the soundtrack is great too.

Only a truly sad b%stard could fail to raise a smile.

The only downer was the terribly schmaltzy ending.

dungfungus 2:16 pm
30 Jun 14
#4

Holden Caulfield said :

It is a very enjoyable movie, if a little cliched. Not sure I’d described the road movie/redemption plot as “wickedly clever”, even with the twitter plug-in. Though I do agree the film is well worth watching and the soundtrack is great too.

Only a truly sad b%stard could fail to raise a smile.

The only downer was the terribly schmaltzy ending.

Holden Caulfield said :

It is a very enjoyable movie, if a little cliched. Not sure I’d described the road movie/redemption plot as “wickedly clever”, even with the twitter plug-in. Though I do agree the film is well worth watching and the soundtrack is great too.

Only a truly sad b%stard could fail to raise a smile.

The only downer was the terribly schmaltzy ending.

“The only downer was the terribly schmaltzy ending”
That was the “chic-flick” part.

rosscoact said :

dungfungus said :

Good review.
Chef to me was a chic-flick, road movie and social comment on Twitter (and social media generally).
There is a dark side to social media (just ask Todd Carney).
Dustin Hoffman was great. I can still remember him as a young actor in Midnight Cowboy and The Graduate. He has gone the extra 10 yards in his acting career.
I would prefer a Cuban sandwich to a Brodburger.

You have gone up a notch in my eyes with that comment

Should I get counselling or resume self-flagulation to correct this anomaly then?
Actually, the line between love and hate is very thin.

Ben Riddles 5:16 pm
30 Jun 14
#5

dungfungus said :

Good review.
Chef to me was a chic-flick, road movie and social comment on Twitter (and social media generally).
There is a dark side to social media (just ask Todd Carney).
Dustin Hoffman was great. I can still remember him as a young actor in Midnight Cowboy and The Graduate. He has gone the extra 10 yards in his acting career.
I would prefer a Cuban sandwich to a Brodburger.

Yes I would also prefer one of El Hefe’s Cubanos over Brodburger any day…sadly Canberra is lacking in the late night eats department…

Holden Caulfield said :

It is a very enjoyable movie, if a little cliched. Not sure I’d described the road movie/redemption plot as “wickedly clever”, even with the twitter plug-in. Though I do agree the film is well worth watching and the soundtrack is great too.

Only a truly sad b%stard could fail to raise a smile.

The only downer was the terribly schmaltzy ending.

Yes I agree about the ending… it was the only real negative… ‘Only a truly sad b%stard could fail to raise a smile’ is an excellent one-line summary of the film Holden.

Follow
Follow The RiotACT
Get Premium Membership
Advertisement
The-RiotACT.com Newsletter Sign Up

Images of Canberra

Advertisement
Sponsors
RiotACT Proudly Supports
Advertisement
Copyright © 2014 Riot ACT Holdings Pty Ltd. All rights reserved.