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Generally favorable reviews - based on 36 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.7

Generally favorable reviews- based on 164 Ratings

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 25 out of 36
  2. Negative: 2 out of 36
  1. Reviewed by: Mick LaSalle
    May 15, 2014
    100
    Chef is the best thing he (Favreau) has ever done, as writer or director or actor. It's the sort of thing of beauty that filmmakers are ultimately remembered for.
  2. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    May 15, 2014
    88
    An engaged, engaging voyage of (re)discovery that’s too in love with its subject to qualify as food porn. It’s food romance.
  3. Reviewed by: Jeff Baker
    May 22, 2014
    83
    Favreau's a big man who knows how to wield a chef's knife and shoots the food truck scenes with a hectic good nature that's infectious.
  4. Reviewed by: Clark Collis
    May 7, 2014
    75
    The first two thirds of Chef crackle with hunger-inducing imagery and laughter-provoking gags.
  5. Reviewed by: Joe Leydon
    Mar 10, 2014
    70
    The final destination is entirely predictable — right down to the deus ex machina reappearance of an erstwhile antagonist — but the trip itself is never less than pleasant, and often extremely funny.
  6. Reviewed by: Stephen Holden
    May 8, 2014
    60
    [A] shallow but enjoyable all-American morality play.
  7. Reviewed by: Drew Taylor
    Mar 10, 2014
    16
    While the more down-to-earth Chef does offer some fascinating autobiographical dimensions, the film is also an overlong, unfunny, largely insufferable bore.

See all 36 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 48 out of 55
  2. Negative: 1 out of 55
  1. Jun 1, 2014
    10
    Who knew a movie about a food truck could turn into one of the best movies of the year? Of course, that's a rudimentary plot synapsis, but itWho knew a movie about a food truck could turn into one of the best movies of the year? Of course, that's a rudimentary plot synapsis, but it is the heart and soul of the film. It's sometimes sweet, but sometimes serious. It has a nice blend of wit and humor, and features an amazing script that just feels like everyday conversation. The best part of the movie is what many directors strive for but never fully achieve: it shows how skilled professionals work, and how they feel when they do what they love (or hate for that matter). The food shown in the movie makes you lick your lips and just want to eat all the gourmet dishes Chef Casper prepares. And in some ways, the movie resembles the food he prepares: fresh, irresistible, and easily taken in. I could go on and on about what a good movie this was. Expand
  2. Jun 30, 2014
    10
    I had pretty high expectations for this film, and they were met, I really enjoyed this film from start to finish. Its a believable,I had pretty high expectations for this film, and they were met, I really enjoyed this film from start to finish. Its a believable, down-to-earth, and heartwarming feel-good movie, but it isn't at all cheesy or overly sentimental. The acting is superb, the pacing and length just right and it has some really funny moments. The characters are all very endearing and all very well scripted and acted. The cinematography is superb and the food looks sumptuous. I don't have anything bad to say about this movie, I thoroughly enjoyed it and would definitely watch it a second time. Expand
  3. Sep 23, 2014
    9
    A nice warm feel-good movie with one of the best soundtracks I have heard in a very long time. Might even go as far to say I am adding anA nice warm feel-good movie with one of the best soundtracks I have heard in a very long time. Might even go as far to say I am adding an extra point to overall score due to quality soundtrack.

    The story is simply a pretentious but miserable and bored chef has a midlife incident as a result of pressure from a restaurant owner scared of change and revered food critic publishing a scathing review.

    There are elements of Hollywood cheese but overall i really enjoyed this.

    Highly recommended.
    Expand
  4. May 27, 2014
    8
    Jon Favreau (who also wrote/directed) plays an innovative chef whose confrontation with a critic devastates his career, so he ends up on aJon Favreau (who also wrote/directed) plays an innovative chef whose confrontation with a critic devastates his career, so he ends up on a food truck to reestablish his love for cooking (and his relationship with his son, winningly played by Emjay Anthony). John Leguizamo joins the trip to add some enjoyable spice. The first half spends too much time with Favreau's character blustering and **** but once he hits the road, the story takes on a sweet charm. This is the kind of small personal film that started Favreau's career (before he became director of blockbusters like "Iron Man") and it's a welcome return to a heart-felt, charming little gem. The music's great fun too. NOTE: Stay thru the credits to see the real chef giving Favreau some technique tips. Expand
  5. Sep 20, 2014
    8
    A very delicious and entertaining feelgood movie. The acting from the entire cast is superb, thanks in no small part to its dialogue whichA very delicious and entertaining feelgood movie. The acting from the entire cast is superb, thanks in no small part to its dialogue which makes the conversations sound so natural.

    The directing is excellent, as it showcases the details of cooking, the extraordinary meals that can water your mouth just by looking at it, and the occasional floating windows of social media interactions.

    Perhaps the things that keep the movie from being a masterpiece are the rushed ending and the slight lack of character development. Nonetheless, they don't ruin the film in any major way.

    It's a joyous, funny, and delightful movie. I'm very glad to have seen it.
    Expand
  6. Sep 6, 2014
    7
    Such a heartwarming movie.
    Jon Favreau really shines in this one, as an actor and as Director!
    I just downloaded it because of RDJ and
    Such a heartwarming movie.
    Jon Favreau really shines in this one, as an actor and as Director!

    I just downloaded it because of RDJ and Scarlett, little did i know they only have (along with dustin Hoffman) around 20 mins of screenplay between them.

    little nice feel good movie, altho a bit predictable, maybe the best of the year in its category..
    Expand
  7. Nov 2, 2014
    2
    Chef uses the same tired out story lines I've seen a hundred times in movies. So you would think the comedy would make up for it, not aChef uses the same tired out story lines I've seen a hundred times in movies. So you would think the comedy would make up for it, not a chance. Chef is overlong and extremely boring, with a main character that i wanted to fail. Not a good recipe for a film. Expand

See all 55 User Reviews

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