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lachyas's avatar

lachyas

An effortlessly enjoyable, warm-hearted movie that will have you wishing you made dinner reservations for after your screening. While the plot may not offer anything unique or memorable on face value, it is much more compelling when viewed as an allegory of Favreau's experience directing blockbusters, and, as cliched and predictable as the story undeniably is, the film is so well-intentioned and earnest that you can forgive these shortcomings.

Robert Downey Jr predictably completely steals the one scene that he is involved in, offering up the film's most enjoyable comedic moment, but the real standout is Bobby Cannavale, who does a wonderful job despite not being given much to work with. Similar can be said of both female actresses, whose one-dimensional, undefined characters are unfortunately the biggest weakness of the movie. The film compensates for this with a thoroughly fleshed out trio of male leads, all of whom undergo significant and nuanced character development that can't help but remind you of 'Swingers', Favreau's first script and, until now, his only truly great one.

I wish that the film had finished five minutes earlier, because it does descend into sappy Hollywood sentimentality just a little too exuberantly towards the end, but when everything's been said and eaten you'll leave a satisfied customer.
6 years 6 months ago
devilsadvocado's avatar

devilsadvocado

Just entertaining enough to keep my interest above the idle line, in a very low gear. The humor is flat but pleasant, the story meandering but mildly compelling. I wish they would have laid off the technology angle a bit, it felt like overkill most of the time. Did Twitter finance this project or something?
6 years 1 month ago
Siskoid's avatar

Siskoid

Chef feels to me like the second part of diptych Jon Favreau started with Swingers. Where that earlier film featured a man connection with his passion through dance, Chef has an older man RE-connect with his passion for food. In both cases, Favreau captures what it means to be a certain age (his own) and does so with as charming a cast as he can put together. Chef is, in fact, full of big stars in small roles, and feels like a labor of love for all involved, friends playing together without it ever turning into indulgence. It's a quiet film, but a funny and touching one, the father-son story at its core definitely worthy. Food preparation is beautifully filmed and will make you hungry (and then disappointed by your own culinary efforts), and I love the use of social media in the film as well. Chef's story isn't formulaic, but it does feel like familiar comfort food. Favreau still manages to spice things up with surprising casting, improvised scenes and the script's techno-savvy. #Foodpuns
5 years 5 months ago
DJPowWow's avatar

DJPowWow

Made me hungry the whole time watching this
5 years 12 months ago
Chikamaharry's avatar

Chikamaharry

This was simply enjoyable. It is very feel-good, and an effortless watch. Seems like Jon Favreau had a good time making this movie, not having a big studio hanging over his back. RDJ is awesome as always. I never really care for anything Sofia Vergara does, neither do I in this movie. One thing that truly impressed me was Favreaus kid. Great child actor. Tells me that Favreau is a great director, and knew what he wanted with this movie. The plot is predictable, but does what it is suppose to do.
6 years 2 months ago
Joker of Gotham's avatar

Joker of Gotham

This movie can teach you some things about cooking.
Overall is a good story, fun with a father and son relationship that is quite adorable to watch with the progress of the movie.
Good job with the movie Jon Favreau, that rant was awesome.
4/5
6 years 2 months ago
Rinke's avatar

Rinke

Marvelous movie.. Not a big movie, just a small story about a father and a son.. doesn't want to be more than what it is.. No big morals, no big changes, just a little tale about food, love and courage.
6 years 3 months ago
frankqb's avatar

frankqb

Chef is an interesting film that almost seems too self-aware for its own good. It is grounded in the notion that -- like fine cuisine -- subtlety of flavour is key. With that in mind, Chef has many subtle flavours lurking its filmic stew. It correctly summarizes the importance of the social aspect of food and demonstrates the power of social media for food to connect to people, but the flavoured mess of a story that is the broken family angle seems tacked on and silly.

2.5 stars out of 4
6 years 5 months ago
Yaten's avatar

Yaten

A crowd pleaser with heart. It'll definitely leave you hungry!
6 years 8 months ago
DaniloFreiles's avatar

DaniloFreiles

Il film ha spacciato morte e sofferenza per alta cucina.
9 months 2 weeks ago
Esnaider's avatar

Esnaider

...
Do you like some food porn?
2 years 6 months ago
ikkegoemikke's avatar

ikkegoemikke

"You're never going to be happy cooking for someone else."

image

If there's one thing I really hate, it's those countless cooking television shows (and variations) we get on our plate (how appropriate) recent years. They even founded television channels like "24 Kitchen" and "Njam" where you can view cooking 24 hours a day. How is it possible. You can't even surf your TV-channels on an average night without bumping into some cooking program where they are preparing a delicious dish again. I'm sick and tired of hearing the terminology like baking,flaming, roasting, steaming, filleting, Bain-Marie, stewing, poaching, ragout, caramelize and the hype-word in recent years "cuisson". I'm not sick of seeing those plates with tasty food, but the oversupply of television programs with people cooking enthusiastically. Suddenly, any known chef de cuisine or unknown cooking amateur has a TV-show where they can demonstrate their skills while brandishing a wooden spoon.

Why the hell would I watch a movie like "Chef"? Especially when I already know in advance that it's mainly about cooking. Perhaps out of curiosity? The only cooking-related films I've ever seen are "Ratatouille" (where there's even a rat in charge) and "La Grande Bouffe" (but this film showed the art of cooking in a very different lurid way). Maybe it's because Jon Favreau played the leading role. Not that I've seen him acting that much. He had a small part in "Friends" years ago, he starred in "The Break-up" and he also did something in "Iron Man" and "The Wolf of Wall Street". He also directed the first successful "Iron Man". But it's his charisma that convinced me. He looks like a cheerful and sociable chubby guy who converses in a fairly amusing and slightly lisping manner. Looking at the size of his waist I guess he's also a fan of culinary excesses and therefore he's perfect for this role as chef. And then there's also the pleasure of admiring Sofia Vergara as Inez, the ex-wife of Carl. What a killer babe. I'll never understand why someone would want to divorce such an adorable,sensual person. I'm sure her butt look more appetizing than that of the pig that Carl cuts into pieces in the beginning of the film.

Cooking in itself is a central theme in this film, but the main focus is on other matters. Firstly, there is the father-son relationship that has grown crooked after a while. Carl focused fully on his prestigious place in the kitchen, so he ignored and neglected his son Percy (Emjay Anthony). The whole film is about the recovery of that relationship and rediscovering each other in a beautiful, serene, sometimes funny and sometimes sad way. Secondly, it shows how in today's society it's seemingly dead simple to ruin someones career simply by writing a destructive review. The consequences of a flame-war could have far-reaching consequences. Especially if the virtual brawl goes viral. And then it shows once again how that virtual world is merged with our daily life The way Percy uses Facebook, Twitter and other online services while driving around America with a food truck, is perhaps a bit exaggerated, but it is an example of the impact of the internet nowadays.

"Chef" is nothing more than just another film in which the main character is successful in the beginning, has to go through a deep valley with the known setbacks and towards the end he rises again unscathed from the battle as a conquering hero. And in "Chef" everything really turns out all right again. This is not an ordinary feel-good movie, but an extraordinary feel-good movie. But despite that, you can really enjoy other things. The juicy lingo of his two confidants Tony and Martin. The enthusiasm Percy shows during the trip. Yet a little warning though : make sure you have eaten firmly before you watch this film, because I guarantee you'll be running into the kitchen now and then to get a snack. At times it looks so delicious and appetizing, I spontaneously started to drool. Those browned butter filled Cuban grill sandwiches were so painfully slow prepped, it was almost a torture. A 3D flat screen TV with scents option, would have been ideal at that particular moment.

A blandly and not too complicated film. In cooking terms one can summarize it as follows: it's not expensive haute cuisine but simple food that they serve us here. A film with a positive attitude (rare nowadays) with beautiful renditions and a surprising supporting cast. Dustin Hoffman as the old restaurant owner who only trusts a classic,safe menu and doesn't feel like following the new trends. Scarlett Johansson as a colleague of Carl who supports him on all fronts. Robert Downey Jr. as the eccentric rich man who helps Carl getting started. Jon Favreau who still has the passion to create eatable art even when things get him down. Emjay Anthony is doing everything to get back his father's attention he's entitled to and at the same time shows his talents. And the whole film is dressed with a sauce of hugely catchy music. Normally I don't pay attention to the soundtrack, but in this film it fits like a glove. The Salsa music creates that summer feeling, the blues kicks in when it starts to be corny and "Sexual Healing" is sung a capella. The soundtrack is a perfect ingredient for this tasty movie. Don't expect profound life lessons in "Chef". But the end result is still a pleasant and definitely tasty-looking ride. Favreau supplies a genuine end product that tastes moreish ...

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3 years ago
Xondar's avatar

Xondar

What a bad movie.
4 years 2 months ago
Earring72's avatar

Earring72

Charming feel good movie makes you hungry!
5 years 2 months ago
airi86ja's avatar

airi86ja

just loved it!
5 years 9 months ago

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