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"Ratatouille" got me all choked up.

I expected this movie to be great, but never did I expect it to affect me the way it did.

<WARNING: SPOILERS BELOW>

I actually got teary eyed during two scenes. And I never get emotional in movies.

The first was early on, when Remy explains how different flavors elicit different sensations and the screen goes black while dazzling curls of color and light dance to show his delight. When he combines two ingredients in his mouth, a crescendo of colors and shapes erupts.

It's synesthesia with food! What a brilliant way to show how foodies think!

The other scene that got to me in a very profound way was when the critic tasted the ratatouille. There's a zoom cut to a flashback scene where we see the critic as a child at his mother's kitchen door. Then it cuts back to the critic, as his pen drops in slow motion.

What a beautifully executed scene. One that still resonates the more I think about it (am I the only one?).

This movie is the movie for Chowhounds and foodies alike. It verifies our passion and celebrates why we do what we do. This movie gets us.

By the way, Thomas Keller and Anthony Bourdain are listed in the credits, and Thomas Keller himself lends his voice to one of the characters.

See this movie.

http://elmomonster.blogspot.com

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  1. Great, moving review. Can't wait to see the movie.

    But you mention "Chowhounds and foodies alike." What's the distinction between them?

    4 Replies
    1. re: chicgail

      Well, to me they are one and the same. But there are some that will say that Chowhounds are more hard-core, who set the trends rather than follow them.

      I make no distinction: To me a person who loves food is a person who loves food. Labels are just for pride.

      http://elmomonster.blogspot.com

      1. re: chicgail

        just saw the movie today! Loved it. If you can get past the rats in the kitchen, you will also enjoy it. It is very heartwarming. The critic character was so nasty. I have been exposed to nasty critics before and so could relate to his negative persona.

        I think the message is that food speaks to us in different ways and we should enjoy food!

        1. re: chicgail

          Jim Leff thinks "foodie" is an insult.

          http://www.chowhound.com/faq

          Scroll down to "What is a Chowhound?"

          1. re: Robert Lauriston

            Gottcha!

            "A Chowhound is someone who spends nearly every waking moment planning her or his next meal. Whether eating in a white-tablecloth restaurant or grabbing takeout on the way to work, Chowhounds hate to ingest anything undelicious. They won't hesitate to go far, far out of their way for even slightly better."

            That definitely makes me a chowhound. Thanks for clearing it up!

        2. I can't wait to see this movie--what does Anthony Bourdain do in the movie??I hear there is a great spot about croissants!

          4 Replies
          1. re: marlie202

            I don't think Bourdain did too much other than consult (don't quote me on this though) -- his name was mentioned in the "Special Thanks" section. Although there is one scene where a character explains that every cook in the kitchen has a sordid history beyond their white chef's coats. This harkens to Anthony Bourdain's own Kitchen Confidential, where each cook he meets has a weird, sometimes disturbing, but always interesting, backstory.

            http://elmomonster.blogspot.com

            1. re: elmomonster

              I read in the LA times that Thomas Keller was used as a consultant for accuracy.

              1. re: cdmedici

                Noticed the name Guy Savoy ( Michelin 3 stars ) and La Tour d'Argent also being mentioned in a acknowledgement. Wonder what their role is considering there's already Keller and Bourdain? Was La Tour d'Argent's sommelier the consultation in chosing the 1947 Cheval Blanc, the 1961 Latour and the unknown vintage Lafite in the movie? A first growth Bordeaux to pair with ratatouille! How interesting?!!!!

                1. re: Charles Yu

                  Guy Savoy voiced Thomas Keller's role in the French language version.

          2. No, you are not the only one. Just saw it last night and have been thinking about that scene on and off all day.

            2 Replies
            1. re: Hapafish

              Oh good! I'm not a freak then.

              This movie is going in my library (when it comes out on DVD). Along with Tampopo, Babette's Feast, and others.

              http://elmomonster.blogspot.com

              1. re: elmomonster

                Absolutely agree with the strength of the 'Proust's madeline' moment, it was gorgeously done, and moved me to tears! And then, the whole of the movie drove me to the grocery store and home to cook and cook and cook......

            2. I loved this movie, too. I do feel slightly guilty in a way, since the film is supposed to appeal to both kids and adults. I heard a few kids in the audience voice a little bit of "what's that, mommy?" when a joke would come up which can appeal only to the adult foodie. <SPOILER ALERT> I was also moved by the critic's epiphany in the restaurant and subsequently by the review we hear during the critic's subsequent soliloquy as he pears out of his window late in the evening. I wonder if anyone out there knows whether that soliloquy was written by a food critic? It sounds very well like it could be. It just doesn't sound very Disney-esque, but more like something Ruth Reichl may have contributed to the movie in secret.

              1. Thomas Keller is the voice of the restaurant patron who asks for something NEW--"I know all about the old foie gras fall back, but what do you have that's new?" This sparks the whole "Linguini" sweetbread special. Very cool.