|Index||7 reviews in total|
Restaurant takes on a lot, and succeeds. Various story lines are carefully interwoven as the film takes on issues of race relations and day-to-day life in small town NJ. Genuinely humorous throughout, "Restaurant' is a beautifully written tale of twenty-something artists struggling to grow up. Adrien Brody and Elise Neal co-star in their roles as interracial lovers, and put similar relationships depicted in movies such as "Jungle Fever" to shame. Supported by a cast of top-notch actors, what could be a lot to take on in the confines of one film ends up feeling like the perfect mix of elements. "Restaurant" is a touching, heartfelt rendition of the lives of young artists working to overcome the confines of their 9 to 5 jobs.
This one is in a rare but important tradition of movies based on real
storytelling. The characters are fleshed out and warm, and the story is
You don't have to be from Hoboken to love this flick, but if you are from Hoboken, you will. I recommend this one heartily.
"Restaurant" is your basic boy-meets-girl movie, with emphasis on "basic" -
it operates on autopilot throughout. It has the basic feel of a made-for-TV
schmaltzfest, and it handles racial issues with the same level of
The main character of "Restaurant", a playwright who considers his work "beyond great" (what we see of it looks pretty silly and shallow), finds himself unable to finish his most recent production. I can only assume this was semi-autobiographical, since this movie has no clear ending in sight throughout, and the ending it does bring about for us is clumsy and completely incongruous with the rest of the story.
As recovering restaurant workers, we looked forward to a little more
reality. There were flashes of insight (like maybe the film-makers had
actually worked in a restaurant), and we liked the truthfulness of the
racial mix, although the racial tensions seemed a little too 1960s ...
really be that far behind?
The frustration and disappointment comes from the film being SO close to getting things right, and missing so consistently.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This movie cost me less than two-dollars so I knew it would be one that I pop in the player, pop out, and file with my other movies. This has to be one of the best films yet. It is reality. Struggling actors, screenwriters, singers etc., all working in a Restaurant. The closeness of the workers jumps out to make you familiar. True to life, it shows bigotry from the boss, friendship, inter-racial love, jealousy, alcoholics, drug users, hay rollers, and a bit of hatred. You will still consider this film a great one because the good out-weighs the bad. When one of the friends who is loved, is murdered, it brings tension and hurt that results in racial slurs. This seems to shock some because the one who says it has had two known black girl-friends. However shocking, the crew knows the guy is just hurt and shocked about what just happened to his best friend. This same guy is a play writer who has hatred for another worker (an actor), that slept with his ex-girlfriend. He finds out the actor was given the lead in his play when he was too drunk or hung over to attend the auditions. The second tear jerking scene is when the screenwriter compliments the actor for a job well done just before the actor head out to play a part in a soap opera. It is a shame this movie has not gotten the publicity it deserves. Two thumbs up for all involved in making this film, and the ones who provided the space to let others know it exist.
RESTAURANT (2000) *** Adrien Brody, Elise Neal, David Moscow,Simon
Baker-Denny, Catherine Kellner, Malcom Jamal Warner, John Carroll
Lynch, Jesse L. Martin, Sybil Temchen, Vonte Sweet, Lauryn Hill. Brody
gives a great performance as a struggling playwright who works in a
trendy Hoboken eatery as a bartender and is trying to juggle a new
promising relationship with waitress/singer wanna be Neal (equally
good) while coming to terms with his ex (pop superstar Hill) as well as
living his life with his co-workers, each with their own charming
Novice filmmaker Eric Bross and screenwriter Tom Cudworth combine to make a memorable little gem of a film with funny, adroit dialogue and its strong message of racism underplayed without pandering to the audience.
There is not much to say about this except to warn other people not to waste their money on it. The story-telling and the directing was so obnoxious. It was a total no-brainer. A duh..movie that only hit my vagal nerve and made me nauseous. There is a long time since I have walked out of a movie but this one made it. Better luck to the actors and producers next time.
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