Food Movies – Why Delicious is not delicious

Delicious is a movie flying under false pretenses. Moi, j’adore les films français but we do not give a high grade merely because there are subtitles and a few glimpses of bread worthy of Poilane. We are not so easily made heretics.

Non, ma chérie, we do not toss our cherished principles into the Seine merely for the sake of a few shiny copper pans. There are standards and if we are the only ones to uphold them, in lonely splendor shall we guard the barricades. Never did small glasses of wine in a wooden-floored, stone-walled, roof-thatched house lead us astray onto the primrose path of perdition.

100% positive reviews be dammed. This movie is best compared to the food it most celebrates: pâte de fruits. Yes, those little jewel-toned squares of… fruit. With sugar. And pectin. And more sugar. Perhaps a nouveau riche vanilla bean pod. Félicitations – you have made congealed jam. Yeah you.

The one honest shot in the whole movie is when you see a grand lump of butter start to sizzle in a small iron pan. This, my pet, is French cooking. And French cooking deserves many movies to be made in its honor. But Delicious is not one of those movies. Just say non.

It’s a unhappy match-up of food movie, political manifesto, romance and revenge thriller – too many plots spoil the broth. It’s like trying to serve Tim Tams at Pralus or Tim Hortons coffee at Maison Landemaine.

There is simply not enough food – you see a pastry dough being made in the opening, but that is it. There is a parade of fancy items but no sense of how they were put together and the creation of the plain food later in the film is equally mysterious.

The tableaus of food are quite clever and cleverly used. We approve, but the joy of a food movie is seeing the disparate elements become one through a long process of chopping, mixing, heat, spices, time and effort. You can make a ratatouille after you watch Ratatouille. You have a new understanding and appreciation for a sandwich after you see Chef. After chocolate, you sign up for cooking classes at Burdicks. But in Delicious you see the lovely wooden table heaped with various whatevers and a few shots of someone stirring something, but le directeur is far more excited about the advent of putting bouquets on tables and Rousseau’s ideas.

To prove our point, s’il vous plaît regardez our list of food movies which earn their Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée label by mixing the food theme with one or two other themes, allowing the food procurement and preparation to shine forth in the necessary unbridled splendor.


  • Chocolat
  • Big Night
  • Like Water for Chocolate
  • The Lunchbox


  • The Hundred-Foot Journey
  • Babette’s Feast
  • Haute Cuisine

becoming who you are/ family

  • Ratatouille
  • Tampopo
  • Chef
  • Eat Drink Man Woman
  • Mostly Martha/ No Reservations
  • Pieces of April

non-fiction/ quasi non-fiction

  • The Trip, The Trip to Italy, the Trip to Spain, The Trip to Greece
  • My Dinner with Andre
  • Jiro Dreams of Sushi (documentary)
  • Julie and Julia

worthy of mention

  • My Big Fat Greek Wedding
  • Waitress
  • Burnt
  • Waiting
  • The Five-Year Engagement
  • The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover (macabre but it earns its ghoulishness)