2000

What’s Cooking

Director

Gurinder Chadha

Location Filmed

USA

Movie Synopsis

Its thanksgiving weekend and that brings drama. In this story we have 4 different cultures living at a crossroads in the multicultural neighborhood of Farifax in L.A. You have the Avila family eating a huge Mexican spread and dealing with the soon to be ex-husband being invited to dinner (by accident) as mom invites her new boyfriend. Latin machismo at its essence is in full swing here as fists nearly fly during this thankful time of the year. Next is a nice old Jewish couple doing their best to ignore the fact that their daughter is sleeping with the girlfriend she brought to dinner. Next is an African American family with husband working for the republicans and an idealistic son who hates his father for working for the man. Lastly is the Vietnamese family where the old is in conflict with the new as the mom is horrified as she finds condoms in her daughter’s pockets and a gun in her son’s room.

All the while intermixed in this drama are the meals being cooked. This holiday is my favorite and I was most taken by the Mexican spread. They really threw down and made all the favorites especially the tamales. In my family, when I actually am not working on this holiday and in the country, we tend to stray from tradition and cook food that we simply like to eat. My mom is partial to my maitake mushroom risotto, my brother Bob wants all smoked and pickled seafood, my sister in law wants oysters-lots of oysters and my wife will eat anything I cook. An enjoyable piece to be savored like a good slice of pumpkin pie.

Additional Credits

Writers: Gurinder Chadha, Paul Mayeda Berges

USA
The Kitchen
Documentary
Genetic Chile
All Time Favorites
Tampopo
France
The Lunchbox