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Film Released: 2009
Genre: Comedy, Drama
Film Directed by: Nora Ephron
Cast/Actors include : Meryl Streep, Amy Adams, Stanley Tucci, Chris
The film is
set in both 2002 New York and Paris, France in the 1950's and is a "true story"
based on brief
periods in the lives of American chef Julia Child (played by Meryl
Streep) during her early culinary career and Julie Powell (played by Amy Adams)
who is an aspiring writer currently working at the Lower Manhattan Development
Corporation's call centre, where she answers telephone calls from victims of the
September 11 attacks.
Julie is fast
approaching her 30th birthday and is having a somewhat early mid-life crisis.
Disillusioned with her job and her writing attempts thus far, one evening,
encouraged by her husband (played by Christ Messina), she decides to cook
all 524 recipes from Child's now famous cookbook, Mastering the Art of French
Cooking, which was published in 1961. Determined to finish at least one
project in her life, she sets herself one year in which to complete her
task, charting her progress on her blog.
Julia on the
other hand, is a happily married woman
who adores her diplomat husband Paul (played by Stanley Tucci), is comfortable
in her own skin and absolutely
adores food. When Paul is posted to Paris through work, Julia finds
herself seeking a hobby to occupy her time. When hat-making fails to keep her
interest, she embarks on a cordon bleu cookery course having discovered there
are no cookery books about French cuisine which are written in English. This
urges her to put one together in conjunction with two French women cooks with
whom she has become friends. However, unlike Julie, this project is a serious
labour of love which she knows will take her years to complete.
The storyline cleverly intertwines both women's' stories, comparing the
challenges each of them face in their personal quests, as well as highlighting
the differences in their temperaments and attitudes when faced with adversities.
Julie becomes self-obsessed which leads to her husband leaving her for a few
days whilst Julia keeps her humour and perspective on life and her relationship
with her husband and friends.
Eventually, both women achieve their goals. Julie's blog covered by the New York
Times, following which she receives much attention from journalists and
publishers which also gives rise to the making of this film despite the dismissive response
from Julia Child who described Julie as "not serious". Although Julia's book was initially rejected by Houghton
Mifflin, it was eventually published by Alfred A. Knopf in 1961 following
which she went on to be a pioneer in TV cooking programs. The 2-volume book is
still a best seller .
many many visual and spoken references to food and specific recipes throughout
the film, but we've chosen one which was mentioned right at the beginning when
Julia and her husband first arrive in Paris and were having a meal in a
restaurant because it is a simple, but superb classic French recipe.
Hot Fish Herbs Main Course Eggless
Small Soles, skinned
and Black Pepper
tbsp Fresh Parsley, chopped
juice of 1 Lemon
Slices to garnish