The Hundred Foot Journey, English Hollywood Film Movie Review, Johnson Thomas, Rating: * * * 1/2
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#TheHundredFootJourney(English) Rating: * * * ½ This cultural gastronomedy is passionate about it’s main ingredient- the culinary talents of it’s subjects but not as enamored by the people inhabiting it’s frame. Deliciously enticing though the visuals may be, it does leave you hungry at the end of it- wishing that it could have been a more ‘meaningful’ journey instead of merely ‘Food’ heavy! #HelenMirren #LasseHallstrom #OmPuri #ManishDayal #CharlotteLeBon #WaltDisneyStudiosMotionPictures #DreamWorksPictures #RelianceEntertainment #ParticipantMedia #ImageNation #AmblinEntertainment #HarpoFilms #StevenSpielberg #OprahWinfrey #JulietBlake. #AllianceFrancaise
English Film Review
A delicacy worth savoring!
Film:The Hundred Foot Journey
Cast: Helen Mirren, Manish Dayal,Om Puri,Charlotte Le Bon,Juhi Chawla
Director: Lasse Hallstrom
Rating: * * * ½
This culture clashing gastronomic comedy based on the best selling novel by Richard C Morais has been produced by Hollywood’s biggest names, Steven Spielberg, Oprah Winfrey and Juliet Blake and directed by celebrated director Lasse Hallstrom (Chocolat, The Cider House Rules, The Shipping News), starring Oscar winner Helen Mirren and internationally renowned Om Puri. So the stakes are high and the expectations even more so.
One thing you can say about Director Lasse Hallstrom’s efforts in cinema is that his art is always strong on sensory appeal. That’s true of this film too. Food plays a major role here as it is the main catalyst for the culture clash that takes place between two restaurant owners, one- Madame Mallory(Mirren) who runs the one Michelin star awarded elegant, expensive and inimitably French ‘Le Saul Pleureur(The Weeping Willow)’ and the other, being set-up by the riot hit refugees from India, the Kadam family led by the widowed father(Om Puri) and his children, one of whom is a talented Cook, Hassan(Manish Dayal). The initial skirmishes between the two leads to sabotage and eventually the two arrive at an understanding. By then the Kadam family’s cook turns cordon bleu and jumps at the offer to work in Paris leaving behind a love interest, a sous chef, Margeurite(Charlotte Le Bon) and a disappointed father.
The laughs are scored consistently what with all the underhand attacks being made on each other. She’s the Mistress of Gallic understatement, stubborn, hoity-toity and biting in her repartee while he is easy going, jovial and optimistic. Their diametrically opposite personalities make for interesting clashes. The writing is fluent but not fleshed out enough, though. It’s not very clear how the Kadam family fares financially after their star chef’s desertion and neither do we get to know the real financial implications of setting up a restaurant in a remote region(Shot on 35mm in luminous, mostly in the Midi-Pyrenees) several hundred kilometers away from Paris. Everything comes a little too easy here. Kadam sets his eyes on the broken down place by accident but is quick to fancy it as a suitable place to set up his dream restaurant. He also has no problem coughing up the dough for it. His kids , of course, think otherwise.
Helen Mirren and Om Puri set the ball rolling with their sparks and Manish Dayal and Charlotte le Bon bring on the romance. A mellow score by A.R. Rahman, the bucolic unadulterated beauty of the village of Saint-Antonin-Noble-Val, irresistible world of culinary sophistication, Bastille Day fireworks, gorgeous nighttime views of Paris, production design by David Gropman also add teeth to the engagement.
But what entices the most is the manner in which the food is displayed and served – the tempting visual buffet cinematographed so sensuously by Linus (American Hustle)Sandgren. Therein lies the film’s mainstay. While the drama between the two cultures and their style of cooking is interesting enough, it doesn’t get you as excited as the food with all it’s east-west variants, deliberately designed to envelope you in it’s sensory appeal. The tension in the film surrounds the two main leads and their accomplished theatrics but the rest is just a little too soft and tasty yes, but not really all exciting!