8.3/10
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Dinner for Five 

Actor/Director Jon Favreau hosts an evening with four Hollywood friends (four different people or combinations of people each episode), who casually discuss the craft of acting and the ... See full summary »
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2008   2005   2004   2003   2002   2001  
Nominated for 1 Primetime Emmy. See more awards »
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 Himself - Host / ... 48 episodes, 2001-2005
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Actor/Director Jon Favreau hosts an evening with four Hollywood friends (four different people or combinations of people each episode), who casually discuss the craft of acting and the business of celebrity over dinner. Written by Anonymous

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TV dinners are cool again. See more »

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Comedy | Talk-Show

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TV-MA | See all certifications »
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6 July 2001 (USA)  »

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Unfortunately Jon Favreau is to self-focused
1 December 2002 | by See all my reviews

Okay, fair enough, I saw most of the "Dinner For Five" shows on Thanksgiving 2002 when IFC broadcasted a marathon of all the previous shows, so I probably overdosed on it. But seeing all the shows in a row gives you a good possibility to compare, without being interrupted.

A few weeks before Thanksgiving I saw episode 4, and yes I was amazed by the Daryl Hannah, Marilyn Manson, Andy Dick show. Michael Rapaport was supposed to be on it, but couldn't make it. This show impressed me, it was fresh, new, and about interesting topics. It had a kind of openness to it, hardly seen in American television. Whether it was about independent film remains questionable, at least in my opinion. It was more a group of people having a dinner and talking small talk. Nothing earth shattering. Little did I know, this was episode 4 out of 8 episodes in total.

Thanksgiving's marathon however did change my view of the show. Maybe I overdosed on it, yet a good show can get away with minor errors; a bad show with any errors starts to irritate. And I must say, quite bluntly, "Dinner for Five" sucks. Mostly due to the host Jon Favreau. He doesn't let any of the guests finish their anecdotes, who without exception are more interesting than him. Only people he highly respects, like Rod Steiger, or like the Andy Dick's (who don't stop talking) have a chance. Favreau, each and every time, interrupts his guests and continues talking about his own experiences, and frankly most of his work stinks. Only "Swingers" can be considered a small jewel, all other films he so endearingly refers to, are not even considered good films, except maybe for one: "Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle". Favreau talks about them as if he was the next Scorsese or Coppola, to just name two people who really would have something to say about independent film or any hardship on the set. Besides that, it was very obvious that the conversations were staged, especially in the editing, plates with desert were handed out twice, etc.

Now why would I even bother to comment on a show that I liked, and now is a growing irritation? Well for a simple reason, I like and recognize a good idea, which this show certainly has the potential to be. Initially, if they were planning on making one or just a couple episodes, inviting most of your friends does seem natural -- but you can't keep that up for 8 shows, besides his colleagues/friends must be bored with his stories by now. Hopefully this idea will be continued again, but with a different host, Favreau should stick to do what he does best, playing in crappy films.


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