Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Film Review: I Am Love

I know what you're thinking. A film review? On a cooking/food blog? Yes, it is strange to see a film review on our blog but this film kind of, sort of, maybe touched on cooking. From the trailer to the brief synopsis (both of which are below), one would assume cooking and the power of food are significant influences in I Am Love; however, these previews led us to the film under false pretenses.

Is there a chef in the film? Yes. Does Tilda Swinton's character cook? She is seen in the kitchen for a moment or two. Is there talk of opening a restaurant? I won't deny it.

Despite these references to food, I failed to see the connection between food and love. Since Emma (Tilda Swinton) and Antonio (the chef) barely spoke to one another, their love seemed more like an infatuation. Furthermore, it did not seem plausible to me that an individual would be willing to sacrifice everything simply because she ate his food one time. The filmmaker clearly wanted the audience to draw emotion out of food's ability to unite all but the theme felt contrived and drawn out. Maybe if I had gotten popcorn, the food/love relationship would have been clearer to me.

In addition, there are references in the film to Emma's life in Russia and the changes that occurred after she moved to Italy to be with Tancredi, her husband. She made the decision to move and marry into a wealthy family and until she met Antonio, she never gave the impression of emotional suffering. Perhaps the script began to loose momentum towards the end and they needed to insert a too often used excuse. Again, it lacked originality and believability because the film failed to portray a history of these feelings.

There is one twist in the film, which of course I will not give away but it does wake you up towards the end of the two hours.

If you are interested in seeing I Am Love, it is playing at the E Street Cinema in D.C. and at the Bethesda Row Cinema in Bethesda, MD. Let me know what you think, I am always open to different opinions. In particular, if anyone sees the food/love connection, I would love for you to show it to me.

I AM LOVE tells the story of the wealthy Recchi family, whose lives are undergoing sweeping changes. Eduardo Sr., the family patriarch, has decided to name a successor to the reigns of his massive industrial company, surprising everyone by splitting power between his son Tancredi, and grandson Edo. But Edo dreams of opening a restaurant with his friend Antonio, a handsome and talented chef. At the heart of the family is Tancredi’s wife Emma (Tilda Swinton), a Russian immigrant who has adopted the culture of Milan. An adoring and attentive mother, her existence is shocked to the core when she falls quickly and deeply in love with Edo’s friend and partner Antonio, and embarks on a passionate love affair that will change her family forever.

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