Mixed feelings about this one. The cast is… not quite right. Jon Favreau is the right build for this part, and his acting is game. But Sofia Vergara is as unbelievable here as she always is. She just doesn’t fit in. Did they simply need a Latina/erstwhile Cuban to take the story to Miami? And Robert Downey Jr.? Scarlett Johansson? Dustin Hoffman? Competent as they are in their roles, their presence detracts from a story that should remain smaller and more nuanced…

So the movie becomes a little too big for its britches. But I think they got the cooking part right, for the most part. And given lots of good music, a lot of tasty-looking food, and a lot of heart, I wouldn’t tell you not to watch it. Just keep Big Night in mind, when you are ready for a truly charming film about restaurants and chefs.


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