For the first time since "The Color Purple", Oprah Winfrey and Steven Spielberg have joined their creative forces to create "The Hundred-Foot Journey", a film about family, food and culture.
The heartwarming film tells the story of a small Indian family forced to flee their home after a terrible ordeal. They travel to Europe to make a new life, settle down and open a restaurant, but exactly where is unknown. Their car breaks down in France and Papa (Om Puri) decides this is where they will stay. Using all of the family funds, he purchases a property across the street (and only one hundred feet away) from a Michelin starred restaurant. The award-winning restaurant's uptight owner Madame Mallory, played by Helen Mirren, quickly objects and protests the Kadam family and their restaurant. The exchanges between Om Puri and Helen Mirren are some of my favorite moments in the film. Both are stubborn but soft.
Papa's oldest son, Manish Dayal as Hassan Kadam, is a culinary genius with a special talent for spices. Rather than crumble under the pressure from Madame Mallory and the hate crimes inflicted on his family, Manish prevails and shines as a true talent under her restaurant's roof.
As his culinary star rises, taking him away from his family and into the large, modern culinary world in France, Manish struggles with himself and the man he is becoming. As he faces his demons in France, his father and Madame Mallory grow closer together.
Coming from a Puerto Rican family I found myself easily relating to the film and the themes of family, culture and the roots that forever tie you to your family. As in this film, food is also the tie that binds our family in daily life as well as during life's milestones. The film tells a beautiful story about life in a very delicious and delicate manner.
"The Hundred-Foot Journey" is rated PG and arrives in theaters everywhere on August 8th! In the meantime, In the gallery below you'll find my favorite recipes inspired by the film. Click on each thumbnail for the full-sized image, and make something good happen in your kitchen.
- Helen Mirren as Madam Mallory
- Om Puri as Papa
- Manish Dayal as Hassan Haji
- Charlotte Le Bon as Marguerite
- Amit Shah as Mansur
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