THE MORNING LIST
The weekly outings like to stage all sorts of artisans and illusionists, magnificent crooks or fine concoctors, makers of dreams or nightmares. From the London cook under pressure from The Chef to the band of forgers of Nightmare Alley, passing by the fake lady-in-waiting in The place of another, the heroes of the week have become masters in the art of captivating the senses and usurping roles.
“The Chef”: 360 degree service
It’s the last Friday before Christmas, the busiest night of the year, and there’s no more turbot. The chef of a gourmet restaurant in London forgot to place an order, it’s bad luck. To see him paralyzed in the courtyard of his establishment, his legs in cotton, his mouth pasty, his eyes glassy, how not to think of his French counterpart, Vatel, who, in 1671, committed suicide for a problem of tide and fish dishes?
The Chef (Where Boiling Point, a fitting title used in Anglo-Saxon countries) thus recounts the extreme pressure undergone by the leaders, in this case Andy Jones, a star forty-something, who tries to stay the course despite his addiction to drugs and alcohol, during a nightmarish service. Filmed in sequence shot (a real digital seamless), the evening leaves him no respite, between a quality control which costs his business two points following the misuse of a vegetable sink up to the allergy rant from a client.
Thirty-seven actors and a hundred extras to choreograph on a 360-degree set, assistant directors disguised as waiters with a headset, only four takes… The undeniable technical performance of this fat-free thriller makes the story devilishly effective. Condensed with a large number of social problems (overwork, alcoholism, racism, sexism, hierarchical humiliations, adrift finances…), the film is consumed without moderation thanks to its delicious fork. Maroussia Dubreuil
British film by Philip Barantini. With Stephen Graham, Vinette Robinson, Ray Panthaki, Jason Flemyng (1h34).
“Nightmare Alley”: the phantom heist
Welcome to nightmare alley, where a master of contemporary fantasy in the person of Mexican filmmaker Guillermo del Toro has rushed with great fanfare. Fine scholar, great connoisseur of literature and fantastic cinema, the author of Hellboy (2004), from Pan’s Labyrinth (2006) and The Shape of Water (2017) presents a profile that is beginning to swear in contemporary Hollywood. His Nightmare Alley, first foray into film noir and exercise in over-varnished admiration, it shows. It is adapted from the famous novel of the same name, published in 1946, by William Lindsay Gresham (1909-1962).
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