Film and Food

Movies reviews with matching food – eat, watch, enjoy

Best Picture – The Artist (2011) & 1920s delights

Starring Jean Dujardin, Bérénice Bejo & Uggie the dog

Rating 9/10

Plot: 

- Star of the silent screen, George Valentin (Dujardin) is at the peak of his career. Everybody loves him, especially ambitious actress-wannabe, Peppy Miller (Bejo) who falls for him in a big way.
– But George is married to a sad old wife, Doris (Penelope Ann Miller) and his only joy is his faithful dog, Jack (Uggie).
– As Peppy’s star begins to rise with a talking film, George’s starts sinking because of his age and his antagonism towards the talkies which ends in him losing all his money on yet another silent movie which flops.
– George’s sappy wife leaves him, he loses his house, his stuff and nearly his faithful butler, Clifton (James Cromwell).
– He gets so sad he sets fire to his pathetic bachelor pad then Peppy takes him in to care for him as she’s still besotted by the old star. She then scores him a role in her next movie and all ends with a fun dance, yay!

Entree: 

You must start out a Hollywood-themed film with a cocktail, “da-arling” with a few snacks as well. Fancy food to get you in the mood. Here it is…

Champagne cocktail 

Champagne cocktail

Image: Esquire

1920s finger food: Bread & butter folds, egg sandwiches and lobster canapes. Click here for the recipes…

Review: 

Many have said that this movie is a love-letter to Hollywood. It is such a lovely tribute to the golden years of the silver screen harking back to classic musicals like Singing in the Rain (1952) one of my faves.

Director Michel Hazanavicius used modern techniques to make the film feel classic, like the slightly shaky screen, faster motion, soaring music and melodramatic acting. Not that it was overacted, it wasn’t. It’s such a watchable, lovely film. Here’s a clip to get you excited…

Main meal:

We’ve got to include a French-style dish for obvious reasons so here’s Julia Child’s famous Beef Bourguignon.

The Artist Trivia:

  • Budget – $15 million
  • It was shot in colour in 35 days and converted into black and white.
  • Throughout the filming, Hazanavicius played music from the golden days of Hollywood for the actors to get into character.
  • This film was nominated for 10 Oscars and won five: Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor (Dujardin), Best Costume Design and Best Original Score.
  • Peppy’s house was actually silent actress Mary Pickford’s old home and the bed that George recuperates in was Mary’s.
  • Throughout the filming, Dujardin chose to live by himself in a 1930s house in the Hollywood Hills!
  • If you look closely you can see that posters featured in this film often reflect what’s happening in the plot! Clever!!
  • Dujardin and Bejo practised their dance number in the same studio that Debbie Reynolds and Gene Kelly rehearsed in for Singing in the Rain! Cool!!
  • Dujardin is the first Frenchman to win the Best Actor Oscar.
  • There are so many references to classical stars and films such as the breakfast montage is almost exactly the same as the one in Citizen Kane, the Zorro character – Douglas Fairbanks, a Greta Garbo quote “Take me home. I want to be alone.”, Grand HotelVertigo - music and more! Can you pick them?

Dessert: 

Oh my goodness, even if you miss the cocktails and the mains, you mustn’t go past this delicious dessert – The famous Waldorf/Astoria Red Velvet cake. Eat up.

Red velvet cake

Image: Tastebook

What’s your favourite cocktail?

More movies to get your teeth stuck into:

* The King’s Speech (2010)
* The Hurt Locker (2009)
* Slumdog Millionaire (2008)

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This entry was posted on May 4, 2013 by in Best Picture Films and tagged , , , , .

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