I missed the chance to see this in theaters due to scheduling conflicts, but I finally got the opportunity to watch this as a rental earlier this year, and I’m glad I did.
Despite all the clichés that plenty of people might groan about, I still enjoyed my experience. To be honest, I’m not sure if all the romance subplots were even really necessary to make the story work overall, but the inclusion of them didn’t necessarily detract from the story either.
This movie is an adaptation of Richard Morais’ novel of the same name. I have not read that book, however, so I cannot make any comparisons of this movie to it.
I’ve heard criticisms that they spend too much time showing the different dishes being prepared, but personally I didn’t mind it in the slightest. All it honestly did was make me super hungry and make me wish I was able to taste all the dishes they were making on screen. At some point, I think I even paused it just to go and make some food to eat while watching the rest of the movie, haha.
The sets were beautiful; definitely made me want to buy the next plane ticket to France. This story seemed to me to be as much about learning respect for other cultures and embracing ones roots as it was a story about competition in the food industry. I also enjoyed the banter back-and-forth between Helen Mirren and Om Puri’s characters. I think their characters had to be my favorite part of the whole movie.
Final Thoughts: I think this one is, at the very least, worth the rental. I would say be prepared though with food while you’re watching. If you’re anything like me, this movie will make you quite hungry.