Tummy trouble

A Chef in Love induces arthouse indigestion

When you enter A Chef in Love in a taste test alongside the past decade's foreign favorites about food and love, director Nana Djordjadze's bland concoction suffers for the competition. The movie lacks the visual splendor of Like Water For Chocolate, the tart relationship wisdom of Eat Drink Man Woman, and the gentle mischievousness of Tampopo. The sterility of the Communist conquerors, vaguely exploited for laughs here, breaks out of that satirical target and infects the whole of this cross-cultural exercise. The occasional tragedy becomes indistinguishable from Pascal's monolithic merriment, except that it may feel even more anticlimactic. For a film that purports to celebrate all the flavors life has to offer, A Chef in Love languishes on your tongue, curiously without spice.

A Chef in Love.
Pierre Richard, Nino Kirtadze, Temour Kahmhadze. Written by Irakli Kvirikadze and Andre Grall. Directed by Nana Djordjadze. Opens Friday.

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