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Movie Review: Chef

The movie 'Chef' opened to American theaters nationwide on Friday, May 30, 2014 which is directed, written and stars Jon Favreau. Much to my surprise, it was a hit with me and the audience. Expecting more of a comedic theme as we are accustomed to by Favreau's previous films, this film takes a more meaningful direction.

Chef Carl Casper finds happiness working for himself in a food truck rather than for someone else in a prestigious restaurant.
Chef Carl Casper finds happiness working for himself in a food truck rather than for someone else in a prestigious restaurant.
Photo Courtesy of Open Road Films

Favreau's character, Carl Casper is stuck in a job which has sucked his passion for creative and innovative cooking. Casper also is dealing with the dynamics of a divorce and a fledging relationship with his son, Percy played by Emjay Anthony.

Casper is also lost when it comes to social media. We wonder how much Twitter paid for inclusion in the film, as it becomes a central part of the plot to the film, beginning when Casper mistakenly tweets a disparaging remark to restaurant critic Ramsey Michel played by Oliver Platt. Michel had given the California restaurant, or more specifically, Chef Casper a poor review and Casper lashes out.

Casper finds himself trapped within a prestigious restaurant owned and operated by Dustin Hoffman's character, Riva. Chef Casper ends up leaving Riva's restaurant when he is not permitted to put out the food he wants. Ramsey Michel comes back to the restaurant after Casper publicly challenges him on Twitter only to find Chef Casper has left for whereabouts unknown.

Chef Casper ends up in Miami to ask his ex-wife's ex-husband, Marvin played by Robert Downey, Jr. for the start-up of a food truck. Through some hard labor and help from his son and Sous-chef, Martin, played by John Leguizamo, the food truck 'El Jefe' is born. Casper now has complete control over his menu and can express his creative culinary talents.

Thanks to help of his son Percy and his Twitter prowess, 'El Jefe' moves from town-to-town creating a buzz and a growing customer base wherever they land. Chef Casper, Percy and Martin travel from Miami back to California getting to know each other better and creating a solid father-son relationship. Ultimately, Casper resolves his adversarial relationship with food critic Ramsey Michel and engage in a fruitful business relationship.

'Chef' is worth seeing and I recommend it for all ages. As of today it has taken in $5.5 million at the box office and is ninth of this weekend's box office draw.

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