This film is not a travel journal nor is it another film about cooking. It is a romantic comedy about the importance of family life. It is also about the exquisite pleasure of enjoying and sharing the joy that good food can produce in any single person. Since eating is one of those little things that we all have to do, it is safe to say that a good meal could be described as a universal pleasure.
The Hundred-Foot Journey starts in Mumbai, where we meet a family that has operated restaurants serving native food for several generations. Tragedy strikes, and the family decides to relocate.
Their next stop is London, England where they open a new restaurant, but ultimately they find themselves in a third location in a village in the south of France. There they open Maison Mumbai, which offers Indian cuisine.
Not only is this move innovative, it is also extremely bold given that its location is a mere one hundred feet from Le Saule Pleureur. You can imagine how having a five-star restaurant that has served classic French food for generations as a neighbor can be a little annoying for a new, exotic and little known restaurant. Naturally, the two restaurant owners lock horns, but ultimately they learn that both establishments, like their different cultures, can co-exist in peaceful harmony.
One similarity between the Maison Mumbai and Le Saule Pleureur is that both restaurants consider their staff as family, regardless of whether they share the same blood or not. Both experience the ups and downs of running their respective restaurants together, as a group. The beautiful yet quaint geography of each location is skillfully captured in a way that evokes nostalgia to those familiar with them. Directed by Lasse Hallström, who also brought us Chocolate, and produced by Oprah Winfrey and Steven Spielberg, this film will, at the very least, make you leave the theatre smiling.