Movie Review: Burnt (2015)

Burnt (2015)
Directed by: John Wells
Written by: Steven Knight

Burnt1

Burnt is much more than a cooking movie, that type of movie has already been done, it is about redemption and humility in the face of greatness. Directed by John Wells and written by Steven Knight, the two come together to create a movie that is filled with drama and edginess at every corner.

Adam Jones (Bradley Cooper) was once a top rated Michelin star chef cooking in Paris who had it all and threw it down the drain with drugs and alcohol. Now a reformed junkie, he looks to recreate the momentum he once had in the kitchen. When he walks into a restaurant, any room for that matter, his bravado and ego can be felt by all. He doesn’t play by the rules, it is what got him to achieve greatness, but he soon realizes that he has to pull back the reigns in order to succeed.

burnt-cooper-2_0

Now living in London, he finds his previous maitre’d Tony (Daniel Bruhl) and makes a deal with him to allow him to take over his restaurant and do things his way. He promises he can transform his eatery into a place that all the critics will be raving about, but in order to do so Tony must take a chance on him.

His reputation still follows him everywhere he goes. In order to keep his spot, he must meet with Tony’s fathers’ analyst Dr. Rosshilde (Emma Thompson) and get drug tested on a weekly basis. Although Adam is reluctant he takes on the agreement and moves head first into the kitchen.

He hires a new staff and insists that up and coming Chef Helene (Sienna Miller) must work with him. The two have similar mentalities and he knows they can create beautiful food together. He also makes sure to inform all his old Chef friends, the ones he worked with in Paris under their culinary mentor Jean Luc; that he is back and ready to take on the food world. One in particular Reece (Matthew Rhys) now has a molecular gastronomy restaurant and is shaken up, enough to break tables and chairs at the news. Adam shakes up the culinary world and instills fear in his competitors, all who behave like little girls at the thought of being dethroned.

burnt3

The movie moves with frenetic energy, there are many close-ups of the sumptuous food and the audience feels like they are moving with the Chefs in the kitchen. We can see everything from the sweat beads off Adam’s face when he is in the midst of plating to the droplets of oil in the food. At points when he was walking through markets sampling food, it almost felt like we could smell the intensity of the foods and the rich aromas. I loved that the film gave us those sentiments.

Cooper worked with notorious Chef Gordon Ramsey on perfecting his chef persona and it can be felt in many of the scenes. The way he yells at his sous chefs felt real and the demands of the kitchen could be felt. Cooper did an excellent job and showed us once again that he knows how to dig deep and pull dramatic performances off without a hitch.

Miller was equally fantastic, she was as gracious as she was meticulous with her food and the way her and Cooper played off each other seemed genuine.

burnt2

I enjoyed this movie because it was not filled with clichés. There were no superfluous back stories going on, it was simply about the journey of one Chef and his ability to come back into his old skin without losing himself once again. If you like dramas mixed with comedies or you are a foodie who enjoys the beauty of a good meal, then this movie is right up your alley.

}}Melissa

Also posted on PinkEggMedia

Advertisements

Movie Review: Beautiful Creatures (2013)

Beautiful Creatures (2013)
Directed by Richard LaGravenese

MV5BMTQyMjYwODMwMl5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwODUwNzY5OA@@__V1_SY317_CR0,0,214,317_

On Christmas Day, I was feeling quite under the weather and all I wanted to do was stay in and watch movies. I had recorded Beautiful Creatures a while ago and finally decided to put it on.

I really just regretted that decision and should have just taken a nap.

Beautiful Creatures is a flick about a group of witches that live in a little town in the South. A town filled with a rich history from the Civil War, as there had been many battles that had taken place there and which still in a sense haunted the community. The story is about a girl named Lena Duchannes (Alice Englert), the new girl in town who is awkward and different and who has come to stay with her uncle Macon Ravenwood (Jeremy Irons).

imagesT4034K3H (yeah this is how he rolls)

She comes from a mysterious family, the Ravenwood’s, people say that they have not even seen her uncle come out in years and this religious town thinks that they believe in the Devil.

The movie centers on her and Ethan Wate (Alden Ehrenreich), a young guy who loves reading and getting lost in his books. He hopes to one day escape from his dreary little town and set off on glorious adventures. He also just broke up with the popular girl and now has a little romance with her.

What sets this movie apart from other witch stories and movies is that for all young witches at the age of 16, they reveal their true nature, they are either taken to the dark side or reside in the light. Lena will soon find out and has been counting down by putting the days left on her hand a la Taylor Swift.

209005_199941250129445_2131911935_n (OMG is she a witch!)

Now from here, the setup sounds fun, this could definitely work out, but it just got really confusing.

I honestly kept stopping the movie and asking my husband what just happened? I wasn’t sure if it was I was losing my mind or if I had just grown really dumb. The story uses a lot of mythical spiritual names and everyone is not who they appear to be. Also everyone in town is connected from way back when, like 100 years ago. UMMM yeah ok, so how are they still alive?

The backup characters are Ridley Duchannes (Emmy Rossum) her cousin, Amma the town librarian (Viola Davis) and Mrs. Lincoln (Emma Thompson), just to name a few. I enjoyed the character of Ridley, she helped to spice up the movie and Amma was so thoughtful and sweet, I couldn’t help, but like her.

images4NKQ9Y6S

All I kept thinking throughout the film, was this is exactly like Twilight, she is the weirdo like Edward with powers and he is the awkward, dorky Bella who falls in love with the wrong person. Also the whole movie has a very Oregon, green, woodsy feel to it. I just kept thinking when is Jacob going to come out and take off his t-shirt? That sexy werewolf beast!

Beautiful-Creaturesbeautiful-creatures-movie-still (oh Edward and Bella)

I am still confused as to why Jeremy Irons and Emma Thompson, both distinguished reputable actors would star in such a corny witch movie. I guess they wanted to make something their 13-year-old grand kids could watch instead of their stuffy “adult” movies.

One thing I enjoyed was the literary references and the joy that Ethan had from reading his books. That is pretty much the only thing I could relate to on any level. Also, the actor who plays him I think did a really nice job with a crappy role. I look forward to seeing him in some meatier roles.

Overall, this movie is lacking in story and the writing just falls flat. I believe that since this was derived from a book, it probably had a really interesting story line that gave a lot of background information on the characters and in reading it, one could probably get much more connected to the characters. That factor was missing from this movie, as I am sure they tried to cram in every idea into a short timeframe.

imagesEZS6K2UN

The fancy graphics, the cool witch makeup, really nothing can save this movie from going down the drain. I wasted an hour and a half of my life and I cannot get it back…ever.

Remember that scene from Inglorious Bastards, when the movie screen goes up in flames, I wish that would have happened with this movie.

}}Melissa