16 May 2016

The Hundred-Foot Journey

The Hundred-Foot Journey 2014
  • Director: Lasse Hallström
  • Based on the book by Richard C. Morais
  • Cast: Helen Mirren, Om Puri, Manish Dayal, Charlotte Le Bon
  • Personal “oh yeah him/her” reaction, i.e. have seen this actor in:
    • Helen Mirren – Brighton Rock, The Tempest, The Queen, Calendar Girls, Gosford Park, The Pledge, Some Mother’s Son, Prime Suspect, The Madness of King George, Mosquito Coast, Cymbeline, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Ex Caliber, As You Like It, O Lucky Man
    • Om Puri – White Teeth, East Is East, Wolf, Gandhi
  • Why? Helen Mirren
  • Seen:  13 May 2016      

       Once in a while (read: altogether too often) I go mad and order a whole lot of DVDs on the net. This film was among the latest harvest.
       A surprise film with Helen Mirren is a good way to spend a Friday evening.
       A family of cooks flee violence in India and try running a restaurant in London. But it’s cold and wet and the vegetables have no soul so they try their fortune in France. But in France they don’t eat Indian food. They have food of their own.
       It’s a mix of Hotel Marigold transported to Europe, Le fils de l’épicier and Chocolat.
       The father – against the protests of all the children – buys a derelict restaurant just opposite a Michelin starred restaurant run by Helen Mirren in a French village. He’s bound to fail.
       And you believe that? Come on, this is a feel good movie.
       Mirren is an arrogant tyrant and an evil rival and papa declares war. There’s romance, beautiful French landscapes, sensuous food, what more can one ask for? A little racism and an about face by Mirren who becomes the Indian family’s ally helps. Friendship ensues where enmity had reigned. Papa needs some convincing but all ends happily.
       I have nothing against feel good movies, I watch them all the time. I like food as much as anyone. And Helen Mirren is always good.  But I never watch cookery programs and alas, this film is a little boring. It’s not Hallström’s or Mirren’s best film but gourmets might enjoy it more than I did.

2 ¾ * of 5



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