Saturday, August 22, 2009

Julie and Julia



I've noticed a lot of bloggers are talking about "Julie & Julia", the new film starring Meryl Streep as Julia Child and Amy Adams as Julie Powell who challenged herself to make every recipe from Child's classic cookbook and write a blog about it.

We saw this movie last weekend with some friends and we were not disappointed. I figured I would like it - I mean, it's about food, cooking and blogging, three of my favorite things. It is also very unusual to get a movie like this during the summer when most of the fare is animation and shoot em' up or blow em' up.

The movie is pure delight - funny, touching and fascinating - and I couldn't believe how fast it moved (it is slightly over 2 hours but didn't feel like it at all). The film alternates between neurotic blogger Julie as she attempts to accomplish her self-challenge and Julia Child, living in Paris with her husband Paul and writing her first book, "Mastering the Art of French Cooking". In addition to Streep and Adams, the supporting actors are great. Jane Lynch is wonderful as Julia Child's sister, sexy Stanley Tucci plays Child's husband Paul and Frances Sternhagen has a funny scene as author Ira Rombauer ("The Joy of Cooking"). Linda Emond is also memorable as Simone Beck, the co-author of "Mastering the Art of French Cooking".

Of course another star of the film is the food itself. Everyone has talked about how the movie made them hungry. I saw it with three vegetarians and I'm taking baby steps to become one myself so aside from the desserts, it didn't make us that hungry. But no matter what a chef is preparing, I find them fascinating to watch. (I'm a big fan of "Top Chef").

I had never read Julie Powell's blog but I had heard of it. The movie peaked my interested in reading her book Julie and Julia: My Year of Cooking Dangerously but after reading the reviews on Amazon, I think I'll pass. I do plan to read Julia Child's My Life in France.

I highly recommend the movie!

17 comments:

  1. Yes, we saw that movie. I agree it is entertaining.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I saw it expecting it to be sappy but entertaining, but I actually thought it was very well done and thoughtful. Meryl Streep was great!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I want to read Julia Child's memoirs...She had quite a life! The Julie Powell book was very disappointing.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Your entry reminded me to go to see this one! I had the pleasure of spending a day with Julia Child once many years ago (I went to culinary school in New England), and she was a great lady. Looking forward to seeing the movie!
    PS Julia's book about her life in France is great!

    ReplyDelete
  5. One thing I didn't understand. In the movie a reporter told Julie that Julia didn't like her blog or what she was doing and never gave and explanation. Does anyone know why she felt that way? I would think she would have been flattered.--Randy

    ReplyDelete
  6. Tim, that is awesome!

    Randy, I thought that part put a damper on the movie, didn't you? I read later that Julia Child and her editor had looked at Julie's blog and didn't think she was serious about cooking and was only doing it as a publicity stunt. If you read the reviews of Julie Powell's book on Amazon, you might get a sense that a lot of people felt the same way.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Phillip,

    Randy failed to tell you that when we went to see "Julie & Julia", we took my grandmother with us. Seeing that movie in a theater was a first for her in 37 years!!! And we, of course, were able to share that experience with her. She stayed a week with Randy and I before going back home. I thoroughly enjoyed her visit and I really enjoyed seeing this movie with her and Randy. ;0)

    --Jamie

    ReplyDelete
  8. That's the only movie my husband and I went to this summer, and we loved it. It really was well done. (Do you get my pun? I did after I wrote it.)

    ReplyDelete
  9. I'm one of those weird people who always waits for the DVD version. I'm glad to hear Julie and Julia was enjoyable.

    My question is why don't they ever make entertaining movies about gardening?

    ReplyDelete
  10. I agree with your review. I thought perhaps there was a little too much of the neurotic Julie Powell. Julie did nothing really except cook Child's recipes so her only claim to fame is something hundreds of people have done. A attempt to get publicity is how I saw it too.

    Planning to read Julia Child's autobiography and still looking for her cookbook;)
    Marnie

    ReplyDelete
  11. I also saw the movie last week and loved it. It was very entertaining and humorous. Meryl as always was awesome.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I saw the movie and loved the Julia parts (could have lived without the Julie parts). I read the book that the Julia parts came from (My Life in France). I highly recommend it. I think what I really wanted to see was a film based solely on that book. Guess that won't happen since Meryl Streep is the only person I can think of who can do Julia Child from now on!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Am dying to see. My chef boyfriend saw it a few nights ago and swooned over it. Thank goodness, no bloody scenes!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Can't wait to see it. I have only heard great things about it.

    ReplyDelete
  15. I knew you’d love this film – so good that you got to see it. Tucci was fabulous. I loved him with Streep in Devil Wears Prada too.

    ReplyDelete
  16. MSS of Zanthan Gardens & I went on opening day and loved it, too. The pairing of Stanley Tucci and Meryl Streep was so much fun, and their affection was genuinely touching, wasn't it?

    The movie did make me want to try that trout Julia had when she first came to France ;-]

    I'm working my way through the Julie diary online. She seems to be a very complicated person and the yearlong Salon blog handles that better than half of a 2-hour movie.

    Since Julie was born and raised in Austin, I guess reading about her visits home to see parents & friends adds an extra dimension to the tale for those of us who live here, as well as distracting us from what's going on in our drought and heat tortured gardens.

    Annie at the Transplantable Rose

    ReplyDelete