The Hundred Foot Journey
2014 (PG) · 122 min. · USA
Director: Lasse Hallstrom
Cast: Helen Mirren, Manish Dayal, Om Puri
THE HUNDRED-FOOT JOURNEY tells the story of Hassan Kadam, who at an early age discovers he has a nose for good food and a passion for cooking. Young Hassan (Manish Dayal) and his family experience personal tragedy as a result of political strife within India, forcing them to flee their home country. The Kadams (with a little push from fate) eventually wind up settling down in the French countryside, where their patriarch “Papa” (Om Puri) decides to buy a dilapidated piece of property and restart the family’s restaurant business. Problem is, across the road from the Kadams’ new home (one hundred feet away, to be exact) is one of the more prestigious French restaurants in the country – a well-oiled machine run by the hard-working proprietress Madame Mallory (Helen Mirren). At first, the two establishments go to war, but over time, the ice begins to thaw between them, especially as Ms. Mallory comes to realize that Hassan’s unusual appreciation for Indian and French cuisine means he possesses all the more potential to become a great chef. While this cultural clash drama/comedy touches upon issues concerning racial/class based tensions and related problems in Europe, the film adds spoonfuls of sugar and comedy to the mix. THE HUNDRED-FOOT JOURNEY is a charming, handsome, well-acted, well-written film that the whole family can enjoy.
“Linus Sandgren’s lush camerawork and the glittering, throbbing musical score by A.R. Rahman contribute a distinctive flavor of their own. The performances are superb.” – Rex Reed, OBSERVER
“Ultimately, what comes through most forcefully in THE HUNDRED-FOOT JOURNEY is the longing of the immigrant, the overwhelming push-pull between the need to belong and the need to assert one’s own identity.” – Bilge Ebiri, VULTURE