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Tuesday, December 23, 2014

The Hundred Foot Journey (2014)

 True, the movie is predictable from start to finish, which did not diminish my enjoyment of it.  An Indian family had a restaurant in England that was burned to the ground in politically motivated riots, and they decide to immigrate to another European country.  One of the sons, Hassan, is a talented chef, one who cooks intuitively and beautifully.  They travel around Europe looking for the perfect spot, and stop in a quaint but closed-minded French village to set up shop, shaking things up with an enticing array of culinary delicacies. This new enterprise happens to sit across the street from a conservative and revered building that’s a town treasure.  Helen Mirren stars as Madame Mallory, owner of Le Saule Pleurer (The Weeping Willow), an elegant and expensive French restaurant that’s the winner of a prestigious Michelin star.  She is quite unwelcoming at first, but is swayed to their side after her head chef firebombs the competition and Hassan's hands are burnt.  She hires him to work for her, he brings her a second star, and she launches him into the highly competitive world of Parisian restaurants.  The movie could have ended there and then, after loads of luscious food has been prepared and pictured, but it veers back to a love story for the ending.  Predictable yes, but very enjoyable.

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