If I go into downstairs in our home where my husband is embedded, I am forced to watch either the History Channel or the 50th rerun of the movie “Patton.” If I go into the family room, where my daughter resides, it is the cake boss. I now can answer questions on every battle of world War II, whether in Europe or in the Pacific. At the same time, I can name all the family member of the cake boss.
For years, I’ve complained about my husband’s choices of films, so I was pleasantly surprised when he brought home a couple of movies about food and cooking. These movies are funny, family-oriented and teach about the role of food in various cultures.
“The Big Night,” starring Tony Shalhoub and Stanley Tucci, is the story of two Italian brothers who own a failing restaurant in New York . A friend tell them he’ll bring the famous musician Louis Prima to dinner one night and they can advertise that fact to help them bring in business. The entire movie is about the chef, Shalhoub, preparing an authentic but fabulous Italian meal for Prima and the customers they are sure will flock in on the big night. You will enjoy the conversation between the two brothers as will as the plot twists.
“Tampopo” is a Japanese movie about a widow who wants to open the best noodle shop in Japan. Japanese restaurants limit themselves in what they offer to their customers. Noodle shops are ubiquitous, and the noodles are quite exquisite, but a variety of noodles and noodle soup are all they offer.
The widow in “Tampopo,” along with a truck driver friend, visit competitor’s noodle shops trying to find the best recipe for excellent needles. It is worth seeing if only for the comedy.
“Babette’s Feast” is one of the original food movie that is worth seeing. Babette is a French chef who works as a housemaid for a family in Denmark. She had to leave Paris to escape from a member of the King’s court who was angry at her for comments she had made. Babette won a moderate amount of money in the lottery and decided to spend it on a dinner for her Danish employers and their friends. Most of the movie focuses on her preparations for the feat she is preparing. When it’s time for the family and guests to eat perhaps the most fabulous dinner they’ve ever had, the stoic Danish reserve in the face of such pleasure is worth the cost of the movie ticket.
“Who is killing the Great Chefs of Europe” was a popular mystery movie that dealt mostly with food. Without giving away the plot and the ending, there are a series of murders of chefs that are solved at eh end. The movie is funny, with perhaps the best lines coming from the arrogant chefs themselves as they watch their colleagues die, complaining that each of them is more important than the one who was killed and that each of them should have been murdered first to show their importance.
If you have any food related movie, I would love to learn about it.