In the mood for a light bite? How about a wholesome feast? A cocktail, entrée or dessert? Whatever your palate, there’s a food movie out there with your tongue’s name on it – and we’re here to deliver!
What we put in our mouths is a daily topic of controversy and cravings, but it’s also a great premise for a whole lot of films. Food is social. Food is happiness. From top to bottom, from “Chef” to puppeted pasta, here are five of our favourite chow flicks to get your stomach rumbling.
Lead role of this fantastic culinary film Carl Casper is, rather unsurprisingly, a chef, and a darn good one at that. When he quits his job in LA, life sees fit to land him back in Miami, spearheading a food truck business with those he loves most (including his ex-wife). It’s Mexican, it’s Italian, it’s best friends, sons, fathers and partners on the road making things up as they go along. A real gem that will have you starving by the second course alone. Even the critics agree!
2. Jiro Dreams of Sushi
Not all good food films take place in fiction. In fact, some of the most interesting exposes focus on exactly the opposite, showing folks what life is really life from behind the knife. Ambition, perfection, sushi: this is the story of Jiro Ono. “Jiro Dreams of Sushi” is a cross-section of family life – Jiro, the father, owner and head chef of three-time Michelin star sushi restaurant in Tokyo, and his two successor sons. It’s a profile of food, of people, and, ultimately, expectation.
Our world is constantly evolving, and so is our dinner. These days almost any culinary style or type is available simply at the click of a button, from pizza to Thai to fruit desserts laden with cream. Companies like Deliveroo can move gourmet meals of any kind direct to your door, while shops and supermarkets are placing more and more emphasis on vegan and vegetarian alternatives. That’s part of what makes Jiro and his restaurant so special. It’s exclusive, it’s temporary, and it’s old. When it comes to taste, tradition can be hard to beat.
France, 1959. “Chocolat” is a story of Lent. Or rather, the story of giving into indulgence during Lent! Oddball chocolatier Vivienne and her daughter have opened a chocolate shop in a small French village, and opposite the church no less. As Vivienne integrates into the community, their cold-at-first hearts begin to melt with the promise of delicate sugar, but not all the townsfolk are quite so welcoming. A romance, a glossy tale.
4. Julie and Julia
To climb the mountain of French cooking is no small feat, yet Amy Adams sets out to do so nonetheless. A journey through the Julia Child’s cookbook “Mastering the Art of French Cooking,” this light comedy comes buttered, battered and with a whole lot of zest amidst the New York city din.
If you’ve ever felt bewildered by the kitchen, this is certainly the film for you. Endearing and challenging, it’s a human face to taste and spice beyond pro chefs like Ramsay and Oliver. With so many different foods available to us all, it can be intimidating to attempt even a dish, let alone a national cuisine, but “Julie and Julia” is a testament to trying.
Funny, nuanced and ultimately touching, “Ratatouille” is Disney and Pixar at the top of their game; the dishes might be animated, but that certainly doesn’t make them any less mouth-watering. Remy, an aspiring chef living in Paris, has always dreamed of cookery success. Something of a klutz, he gets his shot with the help of a particularly smart rat. A feel-good way to pass by an evening, “Ratatouille” is a tasty movie for kids and grownups alike.