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Saturday, December 12, 2009

Julie & Julia

(video by ClevverMovies)

The most famous cookbook is Romania is the one of Sanda Marin; even people who never entered a kitchen heard about. I always wondered who that Sanda Marin was. When I found her biography on the web I realized that she couldn't have been another kind of person: a very kind woman, enjoying the life near a very kind husband, and surrounded by very kind friends, passionate to try in the kitchen new dishes, taking it easy for the inevitable culinary accidents, eager to share her culinary discoveries with her husband, with her friends, then with all Romanian women by writing her cookbook.

It is always like that: you cannot write a cookbook if you are not a kind and generous person, with patience in the kitchen to try and fail and try again and discover, with the sense of humor to take it easy when you screw it up, and the wish to express your joy of making good food to your family, to your friends, and eventually to all people. A cookbook is more than a collection of recipes: it is your life there, your patience, your tries and errors and re-tries and it is your joy.

Now, here's the question: can you make an exciting movie about a cookbook? Yes, you can, if you are Nora Ephron, this blessed film director who gave us Sleepless in Seattle and You've Got Mail, and now, this Julie & Julia.

Nora Ephron has witt, and humor, and the feel of cinematic rhytm, and a great sense of how to tell nicely a story, and how to make you feel in love with what's there on the screen.

And here, in Julie & Julia, Ms. Ephron followed two parallel stories, that had happened at a distance of fifty years one another: the story of two cookbooks; the French recipes of Julia Child (played by Meryl Streep), and the blog telling the re-creation of those French recipes - Julie Powell (played by Amy Adams), passionate to discover the culinary secrets of Julia Child. And in both stories, a kind woman, with the patience to stay in the kitchen and to try new recipes, the sense of humor to take it easy when you didn't make it, the great joy when you made it, the eagerness to share the discoveries with a kind husband, with nice friends, and then with the whole world. In both cases, the making of the cookbook was a wonderful adventure.

I have my own story of watching this movie: I was terribly tired and I felt asleep, I re-watched the movie immediately and I enjoyed it.



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