Chef Movie Review
Jon Favreau’s indie darling Chef is a savory delight, but don’t worry—no more food puns in this movie review. After a string of big-budget productions culminating in the critically panned Iron Man 2 and box office disappointment Cowboys & Aliens, the actor-director returned to his Swinger roots with a fun, lighthearted movie about a chef’s resurrection via food truck.
In addition to directing, Favreau also stars as the frazzled chef of a luxurious restaurant who becomes an Internet sensation after he flips out on a notorious food critic. He rediscovers his passion in the form of a scrappy food truck, and that right there is the entire plot of Chef.
There’s nothing fancy about the movie, but Favreau’s passion for the story shines through in every bite (damn, there’s a food pun!). The movie relies on Favreau’s chemistry with the rest of the cast, especially John Leguizamo and the young Emjay Anthony, and a littering of extended cameos/supporting roles by Scarlett Johansson, Dustin Hoffman, Sofia Vergara, Oliver Platt and Robert Downey Jr.
Chef isn’t laugh out loud funny, and to even call it a comedy is a stretch; it’s really a lighthearted, feel-good drama without the smaltz and melodrama so commonly found in “feel-good dramas.” The movie is simply a joy to watch, thanks to the cast, the writing and the overall pacing.
Chef may not sound like much of a movie, but it’s one of those pleasant surprises you just have to sample. Damn, there’s another pun. A weak one, but it’s there. This movie review is done.
Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.