I had forgotten about the animated movie Ratatouille that came out a few years ago until it was mentioned to me last night, and now I have the great urge to cook something delicious and watch it. One cannot see Ratatouille and not eat during the movie, it's simply too painful. So if I had a semi well-equipped kitchen, I would roast a chicken, make sweet potatoes, bake a pear and almond tart and then pop in the movie to eat my beautiful meal with. What better way to pass a cold (it's negatives for the third day in a row) evening than watching a clever French rat cook while one eats a scrumptious dinner? This has reminded me of several other movies that one must eat really good food if one watches. So, logically, I have made a food/movie directory.
Ratatouille - eat something, anything, but must be homemade and preferably French.
Chocolat - eat chocolate. Really good chocolate, and not just bars. Buy truffles, or melt some yourself and drizzle it over pretzels or marshmallows or mint leaves and savor it!
Julie & Julia - if it's made with butter and cream, it's a go! I cannot watch this movie if I don't have delicious food to munch, and ice cream doesn't cut it. One really needs French bread and butter and a toasted goat cheese salad and maybe some lamb, too.
It's Complicated - not directly about food, per se, but Meryl Streep (again with the cooking Meryl!) cooks and bakes beautifully and in great quantities throughout this film, putting it on the list. A really good pain au chocolat will get you through. Or chocolate cake and green beans with a sprinkle of butter or coarse salt on them.
Also on the list: most movies filmed at some point in Italy or France, involving large dinners or eating, whether or not food is the main theme of the movie. Inevitably, the food filmed in said movie will be beautiful and delicious and perfectly presented, and you will get hungry. Eat, Pray, Love and Under the Tuscan Sun both fall into this category. Their central theme is not food, but go ahead and make some homemade pasta and tomato-basil-garlic sauce anyway.
Movies NOT to eat while watching (to make this a more well-rounded list). This would be any film in which children are starving, people die very realistically or in mass quantities, or there is a crusade or a plague. You will either be to mannishly inspired, too depressed, or too patriotic to eat during these films.
The Rabbit Proof Fence
Doing this mental catalog of food films has also inspired me to cook instead of eating nothing or candy or popcorn during films. It will make movie watching more of a social event, elevated far past TV dinners, and generally enhance one's viewing experience. I am so inspired!