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CHEF, 2014
Movie Reviews!

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  MOVIE POSTERCHEF, 2014
Movie Reviews

Director: Jon Favreau

Stars: Jon Favreau, Robert Downey Jr., Scarlett Johansson

Review by Matthew Toffolo

SYNOPSIS:

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.

REVIEW:

It's been a long, long time when I've been in an audience at the movies that has clapped in approval after the film ends. Perhaps years for me and I go to the movies every single week and have seen 100s, if not 1000s of movies since I last saw it occur. But that's what happened tonight when I watched CHEF. People clapped because they had a good time, it's really that simple. This is a very good film because it makes you smile throughout. This is a throwback film where good things happen to people who have a healthy passion for the things that they love. It's a REAL movie and I haven't seen a real movie in a long, long time.

As of this review, CHEF is the best film of 2014. Perhaps it will be forgotten about when the award season begins because it's not as serious as the critics like, but I can guarantee that it will be on my own personal top 10 list as the end of the year for best movies of 2014.

Jon Favreau might be making an analogy of his own career with this film. He began as the underdog writer/actor with the landmark film Swingers, was a frequent cast member of the Friends hit TV series, performed in many Hollywood movies and generally received a lot of accolades from critics. He got into the directing game with his own Indy films before landing the gig of directing Will Ferrell in ELF. He kept acting in small parts while also directing a bomb (Zathura don't worry if you haven't heard or it because no one saw it) before spending years getting Iron Man off the ground and when he finally got it made, he scored two monster hits in a row with the 2008 and 2010 films, while also still being loved by the critics. He then had all the accolades a person can want or need. But, he was also under the thumb of the studio system who wanted him to direct Space Cowboys. And being a Hollywood director, he did it because it was what he does. Space Cowboys really didn't fully work, it bombed, and he got destroyed by the critics who always seemed to love him. And Favreau then was a man with a passion without a movie set because he made a movie he really didn't want to make.

Just like this character in CHEF - A man with a passion for cooking without a kitchen because he cooks for a critic a meal he doesn't want to make but is forced to by the restaurant's owner. So he's out on the curb for not being true to himself. So what do you do? You go back to your roots and open a food truck. And for Favreau, you go back and make a small budget movie and tell the story you really want to tell.

What was so fun about CHEF was that there wasn't one of those duchy moments that occurred that is typical with these types of films. You know that moment, right? When everything seems great before a car crash, or the kid has cancer or something retarded like that. So it puts the character's conflicts and passions in perspective. The douchy moments! There are none of those in this film. And everyone can go see CHEF too. Kids, grandparents, everyone in between...everyone!

Great film.

ACTORJon Favreau
Best of the ARTIST
ACTORJohn Leguizamo
Best of the ARTIST
ACTORBobby Cannavale
Best of the ARTIST

ACTORScarlett Johansson
Best of the ARTIST
ACTORDustin Hoffman
Best of the ARTIST
ACTORSofia Vergara
Best of the ARTIST

ACTOROliver Platt
Best of the ARTIST
ACTORAmy Sedaris
Best of the ARTIST
ACTORRobert Downey Jr.
Best of the ARTIST

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