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MOVIE REVIEW: Today’s Special

Not everyone's cup of tea

Today's Special: Rates a D+.
Courtesy photo

I once talked a girl I was dating into counting the “na na na na’s” at the end of Hey Jude. Is there anyone out there I can talk into looking up every review of this movie and telling me the cooking puns the various critics use?

What the hell. I’ll throw in a few, too.

The commercials really whet my appetite for this, but nothing new was brought to the table. It’s the same old story and themes we’ve seen a thousand times.

Father disappointed in son, more proud of the son that died. Guy embarrasses himself in front of girl, quits job when not given a promotion that he was sure to get, etc etc etc.

The cast is like a menu you open at Olive Garden. You like everything listed, but after you eat, you wished you would’ve gone to a nicer Italian restaurant.

Aasif Mandvi is the star and writer of the movie. I’ve always enjoyed him as a correspondent on The Daily Show.

There’s an actor missing teeth, with a ZZ Top beard spitting tobacco in a kitchen. He’s perhaps the creepiest character missing teeth since the mountain man in Deliverance.

The mother is played by Madhur Jaffrey, a well-known chef. That was a clever touch, that I’m sure will go over the heads of everyone but hardcore foodies.

Kevin Corrigan is great in all the movies he pops up in, although when he utters the line “Don’t be a p%$$*” I wonder how many films he’s said that very phrase.

The father is played by Harish Patel, and he was my favorite part of the film. I’m guessing many will think the cabbie who becomes a cook was the best character (played by an actor with a name I swear I’ve seen on a cabbie license in New York before – Naseeruddib Shah). His character though, is like so many elements of this movie. All stuff you’ve seen before.

With movies about food, critics always tell you not to go if you’re hungry. I didn’t have this problem with an indie film about Indian food. I’m not a fan of Indian food.

It seems most food movies (with the exception of Big Night), always disappoint; Waitress, Soul Food, It’s Complicated…that movie with Catherine Zeta-Jones…all have their moments, but end up being cheesy (there’s one of those puns) and disappointing.

Just as the specials the waiter reads to you always sound better than they are, and the pastries behind the glass always look better than they taste -- this movie just left me wanting more. I was really rooting for it, and am certainly not disappointed I saw it. I think most people that see it won’t be mad they did, either. I just can’t give it higher than a D+.

I’m guessing fans of Indian food or cooking shows would rate it much higher.