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Make sure you eat before this movie
Published 30/06/14

JON FAVREAU is a chunky-looking guy who obviously likes his food, and in this upbeat comedy he writes, directs and stars as the all-American foodie chef.

As an actor, he is best known for his roles in Rudy, Swingers (which he also wrote), Very Bad Things and The Break-Up and as a director he worked on Iron Man and Cowboys & Aliens, but you may remember him as Pete Becker, Monica Geller’s boyfriend during season three of the TV sitcom Friends.

This is his first small, independent movie in more than 10 years. He plays Carl, a workaholic chef in a Los Angeles restaurant whose boss — played in a delightful cameo by Dustin Hoffman — wants him to churn out a reliable, safe menu that will keep the money rolling in. Carl, on the other hand, wants to experiment with exciting new dishes. His frustrations are compounded by the fact that his wife Inez (Sofia Vergara) is feeling unloved and berates him for his lousy fathering skills to their son Percy (Emjay Anthony, who played the little boy in It’s Complicated).

Then one day a food critic/blogger (another cameo, one of many, played by Oliver Platt) swoops in and in an inscident involving a dining room meltdown and a mobile phone, Carl is ruined.

Undaunted, his wife persuades him to move to Florida where her surprisingly amiable ex-husband, a delightful hedonist played by Robert Downey Jr, offers to help with a new venture. The family sets off in a food truck serving an array of interesting and varied local take-away delicacies on a road trip that takes in Miami, New Orleans and Austin, Texas.

The adventure gives Carl the chance to re-bond with his wife and son in true schmaltzy style, the way only Hollywood can do. Nevertheless this is billed as a real feelgood movie with some good laughs and an informative look at the variety of geography, food and music that the States can offer.

Other cameos are played by Scarlett Johannson and Bobby Cannavale.

Film: Chef

Certificate: (15)

Director: Jon Favreau

Starring: Jon Favreau, Sofia Vergara, John Leguizamo, Scarlett Johansson, Oliver Platt, Bobby Cannavale, Emjay Anthony

• Blob par

PUBLISHED 30/06/14

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