Food Movie Monday: What Movie is YOUR Favorite?

Movies are sort of…well…MY LIFE. I grew up on 1960′s thrillers (thanks, Mom!) and 1990′s blockbusters (Jurassic Park has always been a long-time favorite; gotta love Spielberg) and movies about food are always a delight. From the colors and the energy of a kitchen to the big personalities that come out of it, there is no flavor (bad pun) lacking in a movie about work as a chef, cook or waitress. Keep reading for some of my favorites and let me know yours!

What foodie movies get you hungry and dreaming of opening your own restaurant?

Big Night. This may actually be one you haven’t heard of, but it’s one of the best. Stanley Tucci (who also appears in Julie & Julia) and Tony Shalhoub play argumentative immigrant brothers who own an Italian restaurant in 1950′s New Jersey.  They aren’t receiving local business despite the fact that another restaurant with sub-par food across the street seems to be racking up the bucks. The brothers decide to get famous music man Louis Prima into their establishment so that they can provide a stellar meal that will result in a positive review for all to see. As they make their way towards that day, the food they create will leave your mouth watering and your eyes popping. This one is a must for any food and movie lover. And who the heck in their right mind doesn’t love a little Stanley Tucci?!

Ratatouille. I remember going to a industry-only screening of this film before it was released to the masses; like so many, I fell in love with it. The only problem was that I didn’t have anyone to talk to it about with! I had to wait until everyone else had seen it, and let’s be honest: many of us have seen it more than once by now. The story, set in Paris, tells the tale (tail?  -another bad pun!) of a rat named Remy. All Remy can dream about is becoming a great chef like his idol Chef Gusteau, whose famous cookbook is entitled, appropriately, Anyone Can Cook! Remy finds himself inside the walls of the late Gusteau’s restaurant, and is determined to save its reputation with his skills. Although it is a cartoon, the colors and the food pop off the screen; this is one you simply can’t miss. My mother is terrified of rodents and the idea of even a cartoon rat in a kitchen disgusted her; after she watched the movie, however, she fell in love with it. How could you not?

Chocolat. Johhny Depp. Juliette Binoche. Chocolate. Johnny Depp. Chocolate. Depp. What more can I say? Charming and lovely, this is one that has been name-dropped even in buddy movie movies (I Love You, Man) and men and women alike adore it.

So tell me, what’s your favorite movie that puts dinner up on the big screen? Do you like the flustered Amy Adams and succulent Meryl Streep in Julie & Julia, cute Keri Russell in Waitress or a foreign film like Ang Lee’s Eat Drink Man Woman? Let me know your all-time fave in the COMMENTS!

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  • Jane

    Every time I watch Julie and Julia I want to move to Paris and debone a duck.

  • Adam J Williams

    Cooking movies join two passions of mine together. Some recommendations for movies that aren’t listed abover are:
    SPANGLISH. Don’t pass over this movie just because it has Adam Sandler. This is a wonderful movie that had Thomas Kellar as a consultant.
    MOSTLY MARTHA. This is a German movie that was much better than the American remake, No Reservations. It is about a two dueling chefs that fight against falling in love while the female deals with suddenly having to take care of her 8-year-old niece.

  • Charles

    I am a big fan of WAITRESS.

  • Arah

    “Babette’s Feast” was a great food film; the plot was a little similar to Big Night, I think. I need to see it again! Recently, I watched “Soul Kitchen”, a more recent foreign flick with food as a central theme. It was good fun, with really engaging characters and great enthusiasm about food.

    You listed my other favorites, which are all worth seeing again soon!

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