In the great restaurant of life, there are those who eat and those who get eaten. Raimundo Nonato finds an alternative way, a life of his own: he cooks in order to survive and find a place ...
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In the great restaurant of life, there are those who eat and those who get eaten. Raimundo Nonato finds an alternative way, a life of his own: he cooks in order to survive and find a place in society. He arrives in town without a penny in his pockets and starts working as help in a decadent bar, a nasty place, lost amid the urban desert. He sleeps in the storage room on the back, and under a cold neon light learns how to fry "pastel" and "coxinhas", outdoing his "master", Zulmiro, the owner of the bar. Nonato is ignorant, but talented. He knows how to work the kitchen, soon others realize it too. The first one to notice him, is Iria, a prostitute, who doesn't know how to cook but loves to eat and starts an affair with him. Then, Giovanni, the owner of the Boccaccio (an Italian restaurant in the neighborhood), offers Nonato a job as his apprentice. A turn of events results in Nonato spending time in prison. For the prisoners and their boss, the violent Bujiù, Nonato is a savior; in ... Written by
Hey Rosemary, why do you bring one dish at a time, man? Why don't you bring them all and sit your ass down?
Because you can't mix it all in one plate. You must savor the flavors. One at a time. You must taste each ingredient, everything...
Why is that for? It'll all end up in my stomach, right? They'll get mixed up once inside.
But you don't eat shit just because food turns into shit in your guts. Does anyone eat shit here?
I never did, but... I made a loser eat some.
That's so gross! I'm ...
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The naive immigrant from the Northeast Raimundo Nonato (João Miguel) has just arrived in São Paulo and is hungry and without money. After eating in a smalltime restaurant, the owner Zulmiro (Zeca Cenovicz) offers him to clean the kitchen to pay the bill. On the next morning, he offers a job to Nonato, cooking and cleaning the kitchen; in return, he would eat and sleep in a small storage room, but without salary. The restaurant becomes a sensation with Nonato's appetizers "coxinha" and "pastel" and attracts the attention of Giovanni (Carlo Briani), the owner of the classy Italian restaurant Boccaccio, who offers a better job for him in the kitchen of his restaurant and teaches him the secrets of a good meal. Meanwhile, Nonato falls in love for the always hungry fat streetwalker Íria (Fabiula Nascimento), who refuses to kiss Nonato in the mouth, but has all sort of sex with him. Nonato proposes her and near to the day of their engaging party, he has a great deception that leads him to a tragedy.
Raimundo Nonato a.k.a. "Alecrim" arrives in prison and shares a cell with seven prisoners leaded by Bujiú (Babu Santana). When the despised Nonato offers to improve their food cooking in the cell, he climbs in the inner hierarchy, sleeping no longer on the floor, but in the bunk bed immediately below Bujiú and earning respect from the other inmates.
Food and cooking is the theme of many successful movies, like for example, Marco Ferreri's "La Grande Bouffe" (1973), Gabriel Axel's "Babettes Gæstebud" (1987), Peter Greenaway's "The Cook the Thief His Wife & Her Lover" (1989), Tony Chan's "Combination Platter" (1993), Fina Torres'"Woman on Top" (2000) and Scott Hicks' "No Reservations" (2007), just to mention a few movies. There are countless good movies and series about relationship and hierarchy in prison, and "Prison Break" is probably one of the most recently famous. Therefore the theme of "Estômago" is not original but is commercial since viewers usually like it; further most of the characters are clichés. However "Estômago" is literally a delightful movie, supported by the great acting of João Miguel that is the reason why this movie works. The two parallel stories have the intention to hide the chronology and unfold only in the very end what had happened first, but unfortunately it fails and the only remaining question is why Nonato ended in jail. In accordance with the summary on the DVD, the conclusion is that in life there are those who devour and those who are devoured, but Raimundo Nonato finds an alternative way of life cooking. Two days ago, "Estômago" had fourteen nominations and was awarded by the Academia Brasileira de Cinema ("Brazilian Academy of Cinema") in the categories of best Brazilian movie of the year, best director and best supporting actor and was elected best movie by popular vote. On 28 April 2009, I watched this movie again. My vote is eight.
Title (Brazil): "Estômago" ("Stomach")
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