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Chef (film)

Rating:
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Chef: R” (115 minutes)

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Starring: Jon Favreau, Robert Downey Jr., Scarlett Johansson, John Leguizamo, Sofia Vergara

Directed by: Jon Favreau

Here is a hope-filled, heart-warming, Indie film from the guy who gave us the first two Iron Man films. Miami-born Chef Carl Casper (Favreau, who also wrote and directed) gets into a beef with the owner of the LA restaurant (Dustan Hoffman) where he works over the menu he wants to serve when a very popular and influential food critic (Oliver Platt) given him a scathingly bad review. Given the choice to cook what he is told (which is creatively killing him), or develop new and interesting dishes, he chooses to quit. Now he is left to figure out what he should do next. Wrapped up in Casper’s dilemma is his 10-year-old son, Percy (Emjay Anthony) with who he is having difficult relating, and his ex-wife (Finding himself in Miami, he teams up with his ex-wife, Inez (Vergara) whom he still cares about but apparently can’t live with.

With nothing to do, nowhere to go, and no prospects in sight, he takes Inez up on her offer to travel with her and Percy to Miami to visit with her father. While there, Casper is set up with a food truck by Marvin (Downey, Jr.) Inez’s ex-husband, and joined by Casper’s friend Martin (Leguizamo) as well as Casper’s son and begins to sell to launch a food truck selling cubanos, a form of Cuban sandwich. The food truck does so well that the three of them take to the road, driving it back to LA as Chef Carl rediscovers his creative roots as he reignites his passion for the kitchen, his zest for life and love of his son.

This is truly a heart-felt tale that succeeds on every level as Favreau’s hand-picked cast shine in every role. If you are a foodie, love good stories, great scripts, top-flight acting, or just want to attend a feel good film that involves no explosions, CGI or over-the top bombastics, then this is the film that you totally want to see. The film grows organically when Martin teaches his dad about Twitter, and Chef Carl makes a novice mistake of sending out a tweet that he believes is a private reply but is actually a public response that both changes everything and gets things started once again.

This is a very cute film that should be enjoyed by everyone who watches it.

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Robert J. Sodaro has been reviewing films for some 30 years. During that time, his movie reviews and articles have appeared in numerous print publications, as well as on the web.

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