A chef who loses his restaurant job starts up a food truck in an effort to reclaim his creative promise, while piecing back together his estranged family.
‘Chef’ is an excellent, excellent film, and a welcome return to independent filmmaking for Jon Favreau. It tells the story of well reknowned chef Carl Casper (Favreau), who has a meltdown that ends up on the internet after a well regarded critic (Oliver Platt) slates him in his latest review. This prompts Casper to quit his job, and open up a food truck, which helps him rekindle his love for cooking and helps him to build a better relationship with his son. The phrase ‘feel good comedy’ is used for a wide range of comedies, from rubbish to good, but it’s never been more apt for this movie. I sat through Chef with a grin on my face throughout, loving the direction the story went in and loving all of the characters. It’s a fantastic film and not far off getting 5 stars from me.
Favreau is excellent as Casper, and he’s ably assisted by a starry supporting cast including Dustin Hofmann, Sofia Vergara, Scarlett Johansson, Bobby Cannazale, John Leguizamo and a terrific cameo from Robert Downey Jr. The film becomes food porn on many occasions, with the dishes being prepared looking fantastic – trust me, do not go and see this on an empty stomach! I also loved the musical choices throughout, which really enhanced the film, particularly during the scenes with food being prepared and made (of which there were many). The film is very funny as well, with some running commentary on social media, and great interactions between it’s main cast members. Believe me, being funny is something that a lot of modern ‘comedies’ seriously struggle with! More than anything, the film is great because we really like Casper, and he’s extremely easy to route for. He’s not the best father, he takes criticism to his heart a little much, but he’s extremely passionate and he wants to improve in all aspects of his life – it’s difficult not to want everything to work out for the guy.
‘Chef’ is a terrific film from Jon Favreau, and like his character ‘Carl Casper’, a return to his roots has done wonders for the quality of his output.
Directed By: Jon Favreau
Starring: Jon Favreau, Sofia Vergara, Scarlett Johansson, John Leguizamo, Bobby Cannavale, Dustin Hofmann, Oliver Platt, Emjay Anthony and Robert Downey Jr.