Despite its superb cuisine, an Italian restaurant run by immigrant brothers Primo (Tony Shalhoub) and Secondo (Stanley Tucci) is on the verge of bankruptcy. But the siblings risk everything to save their bistro when they get the chance to cook up a feast for bandleader Louis Prima. This delectable allegory boasts a perfect ensemble cast that includes Ian Holm, Minnie Driver, Isabella Rossellini and Allison Janney. (1996) R.
In director María Ripoll’s bilingual drama, widower Martin Naranjo (Hector Elizondo) is a Mexican-American master chef and father to three headstrong daughters has lost his taste for food but not for life. His daughters are all on the verge of leaving the house to pursue their individual destinies. He knows he must let go, but things get even more complicated when brassy neighbor Hortensia (Raquel Welch) sets her sights on Martin. (2001) PG-13
This tragicomic tale follows an uptight professional chef named Martha, who finds her world turned upside down when she takes in her newly orphaned niece, Lina, and tries her hand at parenting. Mostly Martha (2002) PG.
Eat Drink Man Woman
Distracted by their complicated love lives and secret ambitions, three adult sisters reluctantly humor their widower father (Sihung Lung) by enduring the elaborate, traditional Taiwanese dinners he insists on having every Sunday. Ang Lee directs this charming tale that humorously examines the clash between modernity and tradition within the contemporary Taiwanese family. Yu-Wen Wang, Chien-lien Wu and Kuei-Mei Yang co-star. Yin shi nan nu(1994) NR.
A celebration of the role of food in Japanese culture, acclaimed director Juzo Itami’s hit satire was dubbed the first “noodle western” for its delightful parody of American Westerns and Japanese samurai films. Tampopo follows a young widow (Nobuki Miiyamoto) who runs a small noodle restaurant in Tokyo and Goro (Tsutomu Yamazaki), a cowboy hat-wearing truck driver, as they attempt to concoct the perfect bowl of ramen. (1986) NR.
Julie & Julia
Amy Adams stars in this truth-inspired tale as Julie Powell, who decides to enliven her uneventful life by cooking all 524 recipes outlined in Julia Child’s culinary classic Mastering the Art of French Cooking. Based on Powell’s book Julie & Julia: 365 Days, 524 Recipes, 1 Tiny Apartment Kitchen, director Nora Ephron’s heartwarming dramedy also stars Meryl Streep as legendary chef Child, for which she won a Golden Globe. (2009) PG-13.
Philippa (Hanne Stensgaard) and Martina (Vibeke Hastrup ) turn down a chance to leave their Danish town, instead staying to care for their pastor father and his small church. Thirty-five years later, a French woman (Stéphane Audran) seeks refuge, and Philippa and Martina (now Bodil Kjer and Birgitte Federspie) take her in. The feast the woman prepares in gratitude is eclipsed only by her secret in director Gabriel Axel’s Oscar-winning drama. (1987) G.
Like Water for Chocolate
Passionate Tita (Lumi Cavazos) is in love with Pedro (Marco Leonardi), but her controlling mother (Regina Torné) forbids her from marrying him. So when Pedro marries her sister, Tita throws herself into her cooking — and discovers she can transfer her emotions through the food she prepares. A feast for the senses, this magical romance from director Alfonso Arau was nominated for an Independent Spirit Award and a Golden Globe. Como Agua Para Chocolate (1992) R.