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The Taste of Things

Savour every moment. 

Year: 2023 
Running Time:
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1 (XWide) 
Certificate: BBFC 12A Cert – Under 12s admitted only with an adult 
Subtitles: It is expected that this film is fully subtitled. 
Directed by Tran Anh Hung 
Starring: Benoît Magimel, Juliette Binoche, Patrick d’Assumçao  
An image from The Taste of Things

Make sure you eat a hearty meal before seeing this, and have one lined up right after, and bring snacks! This film has romance, sure, historical settings, sure, intrigue and drama, but most importantly, it has several entrancing and magical cooking montages which are a feast for the senses. The sound of sizzling vegetables, the sight of artfully decorated meals, and we may not have smell-o-vision built in (fun fact: in 1984 we did show John Waters’ Polyester (1981) with the patented “Odorama scratch-n-sniff card” but unfortunately they didn’t make one for this film) but The Taste of Things is so vivid that it almost feels like you can smell the wonderful kitchen aromas, and taste the scrumptious meals (if you know anything about 19th-century French cuisine that is; some of the food looks genuinely baffling). Essentially, I’d wager this is the most satisfying film on this term’s schedule, with cooking being presented as an artform, expressive and emotional and forming the nature of Eugénie (Binoche) and Dodin’s (Magimel) infatuation with each other. Cinema doesn’t get much more sensual than this.

Daniel Kallin

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Screenings of this film:

2023/2024 Summer Term (digital)