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Mostly Martha (2001)
"Bella Martha" (original title)

7.4
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 6,039 users   Metascore: 72/100
Reviews: 83 user | 58 critic | 28 from Metacritic.com

When a headstrong chef takes charge of her equally stubborn 8-year-old niece, the tensions between them mount... until an Italian sous-chef arrives to lighten the mood.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Maxime Foerste ...
...
Mario
August Zirner ...
Sibylle Canonica ...
Katja Studt ...
Lea
Antonio Wannek ...
Idil Üner ...
...
Jan
...
Sam Thalberg
Gerhard Garbers ...
Herr Steinberg
Angela Schmidt ...
Frau Steinberg
Diego Ribon ...
Giuseppe Lorenzo
W.D. Sprenger ...
Noisy customer
Victoria Trauttmansdorff ...
Companion (as Victoria von Trautmannsdorf)
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Storyline

In a German restaurant, Chef Martha Klein is the undisputed supreme ruler of the kitchen staff and woe to any customer who would dare criticize her cooking. Her life is firmly centered around cooking which takes on a obsessive level with stubborn single mindedness. Even when she is ordered to take therapy, she still constantly talks about her work and the iron clad control she relishes in her task. All that changes when her sister dies in a car accident, leaving her 8 year old daughter, Lina. Martha takes her niece in and while making enquiries for her estranged father, she struggles to care for this stubbornly headstrong child. Meanwhile at work, a new chef named Mario is hired on and Martha feels threatened by this unorthodox intruder. The pressures of both her private and work life combine to create a situation that will fundamentally call her attitudes and life choices into question while these interlopers into her life begin to profoundly change it. Written by Kenneth Chisholm <kchishol@rogers.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

chef | cooking | therapy | italian | kitchen | See more »

Taglines:

In Martha's enchanted kitchen, more than the food is starting to simmer. With some special ingredients they just might discover a recipe for passion. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Romance | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for thematic material and mild language | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

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Country:

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Language:

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Release Date:

18 April 2002 (Germany)  »

Also Known As:

Mostly Martha  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$40,446 (USA) (16 August 2002)

Gross:

$4,158,045 (USA) (17 January 2003)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Sergio Castellitto's German wasn't good enough so Frank Glaubrecht was brought in to dub his voice for the German version. See more »

Goofs

When Martha and Mario first kiss, he leans to the right with the left side of their noses touching. In the next shot he's leaning to the left. See more »

Quotes

[last lines]
Martha Klein: Then it must be the sugar.
Martha's Therapist: The sugar?
Martha Klein: Did you get the Belgian vergeoise like I told you?
Martha's Therapist: Are you telling me that you can taste what kind of sugar I've used?
Martha Klein: Of course not, but I can taste which kind you didn't use.
Martha's Therapist: [she smiles softly as he leaves] I give up. I'll be right back.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Film Geek (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

Let's Do It In A-Flat
Written by 'Steve Reich'
Performed by M. Segal, S. Reich, J. Gunkel, M. Fonfara
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User Reviews

Home Cooking
9 January 2004 | by (London, England) – See all my reviews

It's almost as if Nettelbeck had been given a recipe for a perfect film - start with the tried-and-tested, take a character living alone, set in his/her ways then saddle him/her with a young kid and simmer the love-hate on a low flame; add a culture clash and vamp til ready -and discarded it in favor of her own ingredients. The culinery metaphor is self-explanatory but it IS fun to see the heavy, lard-based German cuisine slugging it out with the lighter, oil-based Italian style. Up front we have two cold teutonic hearts, aunt and neice and with the introduction of the Italian extrovert chef we know it is only a matter of time til the warm Italian sun thaws the cold aryan hearts. That's pretty much what happens but it is a DELIGHT to go along for the ride and surrender your emotional taste-buds to Nettelbeck's expertise for the entire running time. I've just seen this movie for the second time in about 8 months and I was just as captivated this time around. 9/10


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