7 Foodie Movies that will Inspire your Inner Chef

Lockdown 2.0 has us hunkered down at home again. But chances are, you’re so over baking up a storm this time round. Enough banana bread, dalgona coffee and pancake cereal that kept us so busy last year. This time let’s get ready to savour the foodiest movies of all time.

These are some of the movies that have inspired me. Some to get more creative in the kitchen. Some have just been beautiful to watch as the preparation of food is transformed into art and emotion. And some have just left me hungry and craving. Food speaks to our very basic emotions and these movies are sure to stir yours. 

Juliette Binoche is a mysterious unmarried mother and artisanal chocolatier who arrives in a conservative French village with her daughter in 1959. She opens a chocolate shop which raises eyebrows with the community. Johnny Depp, who plays a gypsy, Judi Dench and Alfred Molina are all seduced and changed by the taste of Binoche’s remarkable chocolates. Delicious scenes of chocolate making intertwined the French countryside and a stellar cast make it treat to watch.

Julie and Julia
A beautiful story about the lives of Julie Powell, famous food blogger and the infamous Julia Child, food expert. Julie is inspired to cook one meal everyday for a year from her Julia Childs bible which she shares with her audience, including all the woes and mishaps. The movie cuts between Julie’s life in 2009 played by Amy Adams and Julia in1950’s Paris played by Meryl Streep. The food scenes are divine, full of classic French cooking and the drama is so relatable.

The Hundred-Foot Journey
A chance discovery on Netflix in their hidden gems section, this movie was a delight. Hassan Kadam (Manish Dayal) is a talented and largely self-taught culinary novice. When he and his family led by patriarch (Om Puri) are displaced from their native India and settle in a quaint French village, they decide to open an Indian eatery. They come up against Madame Mallory (Helen Mirren) owner of an acclaimed French eatery who does not take well to the competition. I simply loved the interplay of familiar Indian dishes and French cuisine throughout this tale.

No foodie movie list is complete without this Pixar & Disney classic. The story of Remy the rat who explores the idea that anyone can cook. Remy secretly lives in a Parisian restaurant kitchen where he learns all the head chefs secrets. It’s warm and funny and works for adults and children.

Like Water For Chocolate
A Spanish language film about the young Tita who is doomed not to be able to marry her true love Pedro, as a family tradition has her caring for her aged mother till she dies. But Tita’s special “gift” is that her emotions work their way into the food she prepares. So the wedding cake she makes for her sister’s wedding is baked with her tears in the mix and causes all the guests to weep and pine for their true loves and a rose sauce for the chicken is not just any rose sauce. It’s a surreal and quirky take on love and food. This one is not for children.

Bradley Cooper plays a chef who after ruining his career with the dark side of the food business ala, drugs, alcohol and kitchen tantrums, returns after cleaning up his act to redeem himself and pursue his third Michelin star. This movie offers an insight into the reality of highly stressed top tier restaurant kitchens. It highlights the type of behaviour that has become a real point of contention and a movement to improve treatment of workers in the restaurant industry is underway.

A celebrated chef played by Jon Favreau, at a prestigious Los Angeles restaurant quits his job and launches a food truck business in an effort to re-ignite his passion for his trade. He discovers the joys of simple cooking and we’re treated to dreamy grilled cheese close-ups and beautiful shots of food prep. The cast is supported by the likes of Scarlett Johansson, John Leguizamo and Sofia Vergara, if you really needed more incentive.


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