Movie Mom

Movie Mom


No Reservations

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Profanity:Some mild language
Nudity/Sex:Some mild references and non-explicit situations
Alcohol/Drugs:Drinking
Violence/Scariness:Sad off-screen death of parent in car accident
Diversity Issues:Diverse characters
Movie Release Date:July 27, 2007
DVD Release Date:February 12, 2008

It may be a three-star movie about a four-star chef, but it is still a sweet summer treat and a great date night hors d’oeuvre.
Kate (Catherine Zeta Jones) just does not understand what everyone’s problem is. All she wants is to have every single detail in her kitchen meet her uncompromising standards. And for every single detail in her life to be as easy for her as coming up with an exquisite new recipe to enchant her foodie groupies. Is that too much to ask?
Apparently, it is, because the owner of the restaurant where Kate presides (one could never say “is employed”) has insisted that she get therapy if she would like to continue to preside. It is not good for business if Kate insults customers who fail to appreciate the subtle flavors and delicate complexities and just want undercooked steak. So, Kate goes to therapy, where she recounts the details of her food preparation in terms so swoonably delectable that for a moment both patient and therapist get a glimpse of a perfectible world. But that would mean a world in which we could be in control. And Kate is reminded of just how little control she has when her adored sister is killed in an automobile accident, leaving Kate as guardian for her young niece, Zoe (Little Miss Sunshine’s Abigail Breslin).


Zoe is not as easy to understand or influence as a recipe. Kate does the best she can, making her most delectable treats. But Zoe will not eat. And at the restaurant, the owner brings in a chef to provide back-up, a man who has the effrontery to be (1) a specialist in Italian cooking, (2) easy-going, likeable, and handsome, (3) a fan of Kate’s work, and, worst of all, (4) a very, very good cook. His first satisfied customer is Zoe, who happily eats a bowl of pasta. And thus begins the two steps forward-one step back dance of gently melting Kate’s resistance like Baker’s chocolate in a double-boiler with an all-copper bottom. It’s as predictably sugary as next year’s winner of the Pillsbury Bake-Off, but it is good, old-fashioned Hollywood gloss with smooth and winning portrayals from its three leads, a sweet soundtrack by Philip Glass that adds in some entrancing standards, and food so lusciously photographed that Zeta Jones may just be the second most beautiful sight onscreen.
Parents should know that the movie has a sad (off-screen) death, some mild language and brief sexual references and non-explicit situations.
Families who see this film should talk about why was it so hard for Kate to compromise. What is it about cooking that made it so important to her? What were the most important things she learned from Nick and Zoe? What is the double meaning of the title? Families should try to create some recipes and imagine menus and names for their own dream restaurants.
Families who enjoy this film will also enjoy other foodie movies, including “Ratatouille,” Simply Irresistible (rated PG-13), Babette’s Feast, and the original German film that inspired this one, Mostly Martha.



Previous Posts

COMING THIS MONTH: September 2014 Movies
Happy September!  There isn't much new in theaters this Friday, but next week things start to pick up. Here's the best of what's coming in theaters this month: September 12: "Dolphin Tale 2"  This sequel to the endearing fact-based "Dolphin Tale" brings back stars Harry Connick, Jr., Morgan Fr

posted 8:00:52am Sep. 01, 2014 | read full post »

Labor Day 2014: Movies About Unions
Today we pay tribute to workers, especially those who worked for better conditions for everyone. Sally Field won an Oscar for this real-life story about a courageous woman who helped mill workers form a union. [youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=45CX8W9peTs[/youtube] Doris Day plays

posted 7:00:42am Sep. 01, 2014 | read full post »

Summer Summer-y: The Summer Movies of 2014
A few concluding thoughts on the summer movies of 2014: A good summer for food movies: "The Chef," "The 100-Foot Journey," and "The Trip to Italy" had some big-time actors but the real stars were the luscious meals. Special mention of the delicious French comedy "Le Chef," starring Jean Reno, as

posted 3:46:47pm Aug. 31, 2014 | read full post »

The Last Leonard Maltin Movie Guide
Leonard Maltin was only 17 years old when he was offered the chance to create his guide to movies on television. For many years, I kept the latest copy on my desk and anyone who came into my office could pick a page number at random. If I had not seen any of the movies on that page, I had to buy t

posted 8:00:33am Aug. 31, 2014 | read full post »

"Let's Be Cops" Could Have Been Not Terrible
"Let's Be Cops" is a dumb movie that wants to be like "Lethal Weapon" or "The Other Guys," a comedy action film about buddies with badges. It's moderate box office returns are possibly in part because the unrest in Ferguson and news stories about police brutality made the timing bad for a cop comed

posted 11:35:46am Aug. 30, 2014 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.