I watched Julie and Julia recently and I enjoyed it a lot. Have you watched it?
This movie is a charming comedy drama which contrasts the life of The French Chef and personality, Julia Child in the early years of her culinary career with the life of a young New Yorker Julie Powell, who aspires to cook all 524 recipes in Child’s cookbook in 365 days, a challenge she described on her blog.
In all honesty, apart from watching a few YouTube clips, I don’t know Julia Child that much except that I thought that she had this unmistakable high pitched voice, while I watched her prepare food in real time. At first it was quite annoying to hear, but it grows on you. She rambles a lot, nevertheless, its the type of ramble that you wont mind listening to because she’s funny and goofy and charming.
I thought that Meryl Streep was solid in her depiction of Julia Child, she got the voice and mannerisms dead on. Check out this short clip on her solid performance.
I’m not sure how true the movie portrayal was as compared to her real life, but seeing her live and adapt in France is very admirable to me. I feel quite inspired. She didn’t seem to have any fear at all being friendly and so charming with the natives even with her lack of knowledge of French at the time. I wish I was like that! I tremble even when trying to talk to the clerk while registering for an Italian class.
See! I want that! I’d like to be happy and charming and people around me to light up when they see me. Instead, the man selling vegetables at the mercato near our place just wants to get to the next customer
Also, it was very inspiring to see how brave she was, signing up for a culinary school, despite many challenges against her – a schoolmaster that didn’t want her there, being in an all male and I assume all French speaking class, she amazingly didn’t crumble and instead continued to be so positive and just went ahead. No publisher was interested in publishing her cookbook initially. I think most people would feel defeated already.
Here she is looking very happy that she’s able to chop all the onions first, after feeling upset during her first lesson being brushed off by the teacher for not being able to chop properly. She took up the challenge, practised with who knows how many onions, most probably with bucketfuls of tears and just did it!
Anyway, here is a treat for all glee fans. if you looked carefully, you could actually see someone very familiar acting out as Julia’s sister, Dorothy :
Its Sue Sylvester from Glee!
The performance by Amy Adams was al-right. Although the character, Julie Powells, she portrayed seemed rather narcissistic, and it strikes me odd that she’s always talking about Julia Child at least once every 5 minutes, she was still well meaning and cute.
I could even look past the part where she and her husband are all eating greedily, even talking with their mouths full! Making lewd, orgasmic sounds. I mean, one “MMM!” is fine. But anything more than 5 seconds is just too much. But I had to draw the line and cringe every now and then when the husband just casually comes in the kitchen and dips his hand in the bowl of frosting. I’d be very upset if anyone does that.
I DON’T KNOW WHERE YOUR FINGERS HAS BEEN! Its probably dirty! Don’t put your fingers in my bowl before I’m done cooking! Urgh! Its such a big pet peeve!
In any case, there was a part where Julie received a call from a journalist who actually asked Julia Child, of what she thought of her blog. After the call, she looked crestfallen and with her hands flaying, she squealed, “Julia HATES me!”
And at the end of the movie, without it explaining why, I thought to myself, why did Julia Child hated Julie Powell’s blog?
And thus I searched online and found it.
I couldn’t even read halfway through the first page – its full of rambling. And not in the good, Julia Child way. I couldn’t stomach reading the rest of the pages, but to what I have read so far, it was so pretentious and so dull and so LONG! I applaud anyone who could read all the way through.
Its a blog, its not a book! A blog post shouldn’t be more than a million words long! There were no pictures to rest my eyes every now and then. Some might say that technology might not be so advanced, but come on, it was only about 7 years ago and people had digital cameras in 2003. And I think phones already had cameras then.
Also, its not her
fowl foul language that bugs me, actually when used in the right context, it brings out a person’s grief or anger or anguish. Instead, I find it very pretentious.
What bugged me the most is that its so narcissistic and so full of complaints. And for a blog that’s supposed to be known to showcase cooking all the recipes from Julia Child’s cookbook, I don’t see much writing about her experience while cooking.
Granted that I merely skimmed through the blog, but the bits that I did read when she writes about her time in the kitchen, there wasn’t much description about that. Its like, “BLA BLA BLA. Eric is so mean to me. BLA BLA BLA. My job sucks. BLA BLA BLA. Today, I cooked Beof Bourginon. It was fine. BLA BLA BLA”
I mean come on, it doesn’t take a foodie to know this, but if someone loves something, big chances is that they would want to share their joy and be more descriptive in their experience – be it good or bad. With her blog, I didn’t sense the love.
Nope, none of this when trying out your own cooking and really liking it.
I’m not a chef, or such an acclaimed food blogger, but I can usually tell if a person is being genuine or not on a blog. I get the appeal of Marisa, who herself was inspired by Julie and Julia. And is blogging about making new dress a day for 365 days. She’s adorably cute but most importantly, she seems genuinely passionate and enjoy what she’s doing.
So it baffles me, that there are so many people following Julia Powell’s blog and actually reading her drone. And on top of that, she gets donations through a paypal account, so much so to the point that that she could blow it on whatever. And she got two books published at this point of writing, and retained her fame through the movie. Something is wrong here.
This reminds me of the save Karyn project all over again – where a young woman accumulated a $20,000 credit due to HER overspending and she set up a website to ask for donations. Quite shameless right? Ironically, now all her bills are paid for, she’s publishing a book, has interviews from top television networks and a movie will be done about her in the future.
It feels like I’m doing wrong in life. But I’m comforted in the fact that Julia Childs herself didn’t approve of Julie’s blog. So there is hope in this world after all.
Anyway, if you haven’t watched this movie yet, do catch it. As someone who likes to eat, it was fun to watch. Just that I thought that it was better without the Julie part 😛