First of all: I love Meryl Streep, so I'm a bit biased towards this movie. Second of all: I know nothing about Julia Childs so Mrs. Streep's depiction of her could be right on the nose or nowhere near the real thing. Considering it's Meryl Streep I'm going to say she did an awesome job.
The movie is essentially a dual biopic (biographic movie of two people, for those of you who don't understand film jargon.) The first biography is, of course, the story of how famed chef (cheftress? chefette?) Julia Childs got her start cooking. She and her husband move to France for his job, which even though I watched the movie twice I still didn't catch and don't really care about. Basically it's not very important. Julia decides that while her husband is working she's going to cook to keep herself busy. What better place to learn to cook than Le Cordon Bleu? (Again, for those of you who don't know Le Cordon Bleu is one of the most intense culinary schools in the world. Period.)
Fast forward 40ish years and we meet Julie Powell; a kind of pathetic, cubicle-dwelling albeit adorable, 30 year old wannabe-author. Call me harsh, but that's how the character comes across. Amy Adams, however, is one of the cutest girls on the planet. Julie has an unabashed love for Julia Childs, so when one of her snarky businesswoman friends publishes an article and beings a blog, Julie decides that even she can write one. Her boyfriend proposes that she blog about something she loves, which is where Julie's and Julia's worlds collide.
Over the movie is heart-warming and super cute. I loved it enough to watch it twice. The love stories between Julia and her husband and Julie and her boyfriend are not major plot devices but they are romantic yet predictable. It makes you all fuzzy inside. The cinematography is good. There aren't any points that lag so you don't feel disinterested at any point. It's not a great masterpiece like Gone with the Wind or whatever but it is a movie that is good for all ages.
There is no tagline for this title, and no background on the front cover of the DVD case. The back cover reveals a very bare-bones version of the plot. Nobody even bothered to showcase a line from a newspaper/internet article about the actual movie.
Basically, the box fails to tell you that this movie is EFFING AWESOME. Clint Eastwood says this will be his last role as an actor, and if you watch the movie, you will understand why: how could he possibly top this?
The film is also very well directed by the same Mr Eastwood. The script is flawless- though parents must be warned that not a single 5 minute clip is appropriate for children- and the Hmong actors, most of whom have never been in a movie, did a great job adlibbing and switching between Hmong and English.
In short, I was more than impressed by this film, and by everyone involved. If you've been avoiding this one because it looks like a western, do not fret; this is everything you've been looking for in a drama. I highly recommend it to anyone who is looking for a film that is never cheesy and often gritty, but also not a downer, or to anyone who occasionally thinks racism is just plain funny.
Reviews are written by Westside Video employees and customers- in other words, by people like you. If you have a review you'd like to share, submit it via email or in store!