15 Foodie Films That'll Make You Thankful Thanksgiving Is Here
When movies and good food go together, it's like having, well, the best turkey and stuffing combo ever. In that spirit, we've rounded up some of the best films that showcase chefs, bakers, food scenes, and everything in between, just in time for Thanksgiving. Have a look, and satisfy your cinematic cravings!
— Additional reporting by Shannon Vestal Robson
Eat, Pray, Love
What's a girl to do after a painful divorce? Travel the world and find herself, of course — oh, and lots of eating. Not to knock spirituality in India or love in Bali, but watching Julia Roberts as Elizabeth Gilbert eat her way through Italy (downing gelato, pizza, and pasta) is the main highlight of the film.
This plot is all kinds of messy: Jenna (Keri Russell) is unhappily married, finds herself pregnant, works for a crappy boss, and has an affair with the new doctor in town, who's also married. The good news: she bakes awesome pies, and makes us want to make our own.
The Five-Year Engagement
It seems like nothing can go right for Tom (Jason Segel), a sous chef at a fancy restaurant, and his fiancée (Emily Blunt). The two get engaged but have to put the big day on hold after their lives go in different directions. At least Tom's career has a happy ending when he opens a trendy food truck.
Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle
What happens when two stoners get high and see a commercial for fast-food burgers? A trip to White Castle, of course. To get there, Harold and Kumar run into a bunch of setbacks (like meeting a cheetah that escaped from the zoo), all in the name of the munchies.
A rat named Remy enters a restaurant with the dream of being a chef, but since he's a rat, he befriends a Parisian garbage boy to help him, who gets most of the glory. Remy eventually gets the credit for his delicious dishes — including the titular ratatouille — which all look good enough to eat, even though it's all animated.
Julie & Julia
In this foodie flick, we follow two stories: Julia Child getting her start as a chef and blogger Julie Powell trying to cook all 524 recipes in Child's first book. It's as much about determination as it is about savory recipes — and the fact that you can never have too much butter.
Talk about mixing complicated family dynamics and Thanksgiving dinner. When four families from different ethnic backgrounds — Latino, Jewish, Vietnamese, and African American — gather for the American feast, each group faces its own issues, screaming matches ensue, and we get to laugh along the way.
Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory
No meal is complete without dessert, and all the sweets you could ever want or imagine exist in this movie wonderland. Charlie Bucket snags a golden ticket and wins a trip to Willy Wonka's magical factory, where he desperately wants to win a lifetime supply of Wonka chocolate. So do we, Charlie. So do we.
This movie's all about the — you guessed it — chocolate. When single mother Vianne moves to a French village, she decides to open a small chocolaterie, and soon her shop and way of living changes the people in the conservative town. Besides the sweets, there's another type of (eye) candy in the film: a river gypsy played by Johnny Depp.
Uptight master chef Kate (Catherine Zeta-Jones) pretty much runs the kitchen at an upscale New York City restaurant — that is, until her young niece comes to live with her and another chef (Aaron Eckhart) takes over. There's plenty of tension (sexual and otherwise), but we get an important takeaway: food always saves the day.
It's tough running a restaurant when you have no idea how to cook. But that's what happens to Amanda (Sarah Michelle Gellar) after her mother passes away. Luckily, she picks up a magic crab (yes, you read that right) that casts a spell with a wave of its claw and turns her business around. The new kitchen skills also make her very popular with love interest Sean Patrick Flanery.
It certainly is complicated: a divorced couple rekindles their spark, but he's married to someone else in this movie. Lucky for us, there's nothing complicated about the food in the film. Jane, played by Meryl Streep, owns a successful bakery and cooks up delicious meals for her loved ones. When she lets Adam (Steve Martin) choose anything from her menu, she makes him the most delicious-looking chocolate croissants I've ever seen.
Jiro Dreams of Sushi
Jiro is just a common sushi chef . . . who happens to make the most delicious, sought-after sushi on the planet. This documentary catalogs the family rivalry between Jiro and his son, an up-and-coming sushi chef, and makes you yearn for fresh-caught salmon on sticky rice along the way.
Jon Favreau plays an LA-based chef who starts at the top as a respected chef, then loses his job after challenging the status quo. The happy ending involves a food truck and Cuban sandwiches, which make your mouth water for 100% of the viewing time.
Is there anything sexier than a chef? No, there is not, and Bradley Cooper is possibly the tastiest thing in this movie, even with all that delicious food around.