John Favreau is the quintessential Hollywood Cinderella story. As an actor, he was frustrated with the small roles he was getting, so he took the bull by the horns, co-wrote dream roles for himself and Vince Vaughn in Swingers and became a movie star. That wasn’t enough, so he flexed his directorial muscles on little oddities until he got behind the camera on the massive Iron Man. Now, a decade or two later, he’s combining the lot. The small, character based stories of his early years, with the free directorial autonomy and all star case of his later years, in Chef.
10 years ago, Carl Casper (Favreau) was the hottest, limit pushing chef in Los Angeles, raved about by food critic Ramsay Michel (Oliver Platt). Today, he has a prestige restaurant at his disposal, owned by Dustin Hoffman’s Riva, complete with Scarlett Johansen as the world’s hottest hostess, Molly. When Ramsay Michel returns, his scathing review paints Carl as a boring has been. A half assed social media lesson from his son leads to a very public, online breakdown from Carl, before a real life break down sees him unemployed. (more…)