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Review: 'Chef' truly cooks up season's first 'feel-good' film

Before venturing out to see “Chef,” make sure to have a full stomach, or be prepared to leave the theater fantasizing about cubanos, beignets and everything in between.by: SUBMITTED - New film - In Jon Favreau's (right) new film ‘Chef,' he rebuilds a relationship with his son (Emjay Anthony, center) with his trusty line cook at his side, portrayed by John Leguizamo (left). The trio cooks across the states in the movie, which opens Friday.

The new film starring Jon Favreau follows a Los Angeles chef who struggles to find himself in the culinary world after being fired from his upscale restaurant job. In what can positively be described a summer feel-good flick, Favreau plays Carl Casper who was once described as a hot shot chef, until spending the past 10 years miserable in a successful but safe restaurant. After receiving a biting review, Casper loses control out of his desire to rekindle the creative side of his culinary passion. With a push from his ex-wife (Sofia Vergara) and an attempt to rekindle his relationship with his son (Emjay Anthony) starting his own food truck becomes the answer he was seeking.

The father-son team, joined by the always hilarious John Leguizamo as his trusty line cook, cook their way across the states driving the truck from Miami to L.A. It’s in this second half that the movie really becomes about more than just the food, although it should be mentioned the food shots are incredible, deserving of a second advisement to enjoy a hearty meal before viewing.

Favreau, who also wrote and directed the movie, does an excellent job of capturing the struggle of trying to discover yourself and happiness, while raising a family. It’s truly something that speaks to everyone, which makes the film something everyone can relate to in one way or another.

As for the acting, Anthony was exceptional as a child actor. Not only did he make the role seem genuine, something that’s often lacking with children, but his character was entertaining to boot, although he made even me (at 22) feel old with his knowledge of social media and aptitude for technology. Are kids really like that these days?

“Chef” might have run a little long at 115 minutes, but overall was thoroughly enjoyable. If only that’s really how life worked. The film opens Friday.



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