Hassan’s family flees Mumbai after arsonists destroy the Kadam family restaurant, killing his mother. They decide to relocate to France.
Fortuitously their Ford Transit breaks down by a pretty girl in a pretty village where there’s a restaurant for sale. It was abandoned in the face of competition from the Michelin-starred noshery of Mme Mallory across the street. Cuisine-culture-clash romcom-drama ensues.
The film has some laughs and an appealing cast, and it looks lovely (Lasse Hallström directed Chocolat, too) but Steven Knight’s script shows how book adaptations can go wrong. It lacks structure and drama, stuffing in too many episodes and characters like [insert inevitable food reference].
Then there’s the language. The locals (including Helen Mirren – pourquoi?) speak French-accented English among themselves as well as to the Kadams. It’s a bit toe-curling.
Released August 14, 1014.