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Burnt
DVD disk
03.22.2016 By: Lauren Bradshaw
Burnt order download
Director:
John Wells

Actors:
Bradley Cooper
Sienna Miller
Daniel Brühl

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
A volatile, yet incredibly talented chef (Bradley Cooper) attempts to revitalize his promising career and achieve a third Michelin star, despite his self-destructive nature.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
It's surprising that BURNT wasn't better received among critics and moviegoers last year. It isn't a bad movie; mediocre, yes... but certainly better than Rotten Tomatoes would lead you to believe. Maybe the issue was all of the Oscar buzz leading up to the release date, which made the film seem even more disappointing... or maybe it was that last year's CHEF seemingly beat this movie to the punch. Either way, I think it was the low expectations I had going into BURNT that made me enjoy it more than many of my peers.

Bad news first: BURNT isn't an original story, and Cooper's character, Adam Jones, seems like the typical hot head chef that you would see on TV (think Gordon Ramsay screaming at sous chefs about risotto). But perhaps the most painful part of the film is screenwriter Steven Knight's (at times) exposition-heavy script. Such unnatural dialogue almost always takes me out of the movie as I scream internally, "No one actually talks like this!"

However, any film that combines some of the best actors working today and, let's be real, food porn is immediately going to make its way to my good side. Despite the cliched characterization of the film's lead, Cooper brings the most out of his role. It was his biting, yet surprisingly sympathetic performance that actually gave layers to the film. Costars Daniel Brühl and Sienna Miller similarly elevate their characters, along with the film. And when it comes to the most important aspect of the film, the food, director John Wells goes for the gold. He languishes over the food dishes in the film, filming each one like it would next air on the Food Network. Wells also films the kitchen scenes in a way that makes you feel like you are in the kitchen alongside the characters.

BURNT doesn't take many dramatic risks, preferring to go the safe, predictable route instead of changing things up like MISSISSIPPI GRIND. But still, it was entertaining and appealed to my taste buds. My biggest suggestion is that you don't go into this movie feeling the least bit hungry.
THE EXTRAS
Commentary Track: Director John Wells is joined by Marcus Wareing, the Chef Patron at a two Michelin star restaurant and the Executive Chef Consultant on BURNT, to talk about the film. This track is an interesting mix of insight into the filmmaking process, as well as Wareing's take on the culinary world as it was portrayed in the film.

Deleted Scenes: There are five deleted scenes with optional commentary from director John Wells: Breakfast of Champs, Drugging the Food Critic, Thanks for Dining at the Langham, Helene's Ex, and Cooking at Helene's. Fans of Jamie Dornan should be excited to finally see his character, who was cut out of the film's theatrical release. You can find him in the deleted scene "Helene's Ex". I was hoping to find more scenes showing Alicia Vikander, but unfortunately there is nothing more to report.

Burnt: In The Kitchen With Bradley Cooper: I was hoping this would be a Food Network type show with Bradley Cooper teaching us how to cook a meal. But sadly, it is more of a "making of" documentary that goes behind the scenes of the production, interviewing the actors and crew. Womp womp.

Q&A Highlights With Director and Cast: This almost 25 minute long featurette shows highlights from three Q&As: The Screen Actors Guild (October 11, 2015); The New York City Food and Wine Festival (October 18, 2015); and the SAG Foundation (October 18, 2015).
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
Although BURNT doesn't venture far from what you would imagine a chef-centered movie would be about, it is still entertaining and features great performances from the best actors working today. And did I mention there are also scenes featuring Bradley Cooper speaking French? Surprisingly, the Blu-Ray and DVD release also comes stocked with many special features that will further add to your cinematic experience. While worth the purchase, I would suggest waiting a few months for the price to drop. Until then... Allez cuisine!
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