A unique friendship develops when a little girl and her dying mother inherit a cook – Mr. Church. What begins as an arrangement that should only last six months, instead spans fifteen years.
- Henry Church: Eddie Murphy
- Charlotte ‘Charlie’ Brooks: Britt Robertson
- Marie Brooks: Natascha McElhone
- Owen: Xavier Samuel
- Poppy: Lucy Fry
- Eddie Larson: Christian Madsen
- Izzy: Mckenna Grace
- Young Charlie: Natalie Coughlin
- Young Poppy: Madison Wolfe
- Young Owen: Lincoln Melcher
- Frankie Twiggs: Thom Barry
- Michael: Michael Leone
- Gibby: Sara Shearer
- Waitress: Aileen Burdock
- Original Music Composer: Mark Isham
- Director: Bruce Beresford
- Editor: David Beatty
- Producer: Mark Canton
- Director of Photography: Sharone Meir
- Producer: Courtney Solomon
- Writer: Susan McMartin
- Producer: David Buelow
- Producer: Lee Nelson
- Reno: **People come together for a reason, but stay together for no reason.**
According to me this film was silently made. I mean we only anticipate big production films and current famous director, actors’ films, particularly the science fiction and superhero films as they are the trend now. The promotion begins from the day it was announced. So I did not realise when this one started to come to exist. But when I did come to know, all I know was it is an Eddie Murphy’s film and I should give it a try. Because I felt like I haven’t seen him for a decade.
After watching it, I totally stunned and asked myself is this the same Eddie we used to enjoy his comedies? Yep, but no. I mean the guy was the same, but I saw completely a new of him as an actor. He definitely chose a best script and this is the break he was looking for all these years. Initially Samuel L. Jackson was considered for the lead role, later replaced by him. I won’t be surprised if he gets the Oscar nomination for the role he played. I don’t care whether it is for a lead or supporting role, but I’ll be very happy for the nod. And I also won’t care if he wins or not, but this film and his role will remain special to me forever.
So what this film is about? It was the story of Charlie Brooks, a woman who recalls her memories of the life she spent together with a man called Church since she was a ten year old. It all begins when one day after waking up in the morning to find a stranger in her kitchen, Then she learns that he’s their new cook assigned by her mother’s ex-boyfriend. She initially hates him, but it does not remain the same way when time passes by. That’s what this tale is going to reveal how far he remain in her family to help her ill mother. All the following events very beautifully told.
What I’m surprised the most was, it is not based on any book. Thanks for that, because usually the book fans attack such move. Like they usually say the adaptation to the screen is ruined the original material. Anyway, I’m film guy, I like books turned into the films, because I’m lazy to read them. But it was inspired by the real friendship, that’s what the opening statement says. Which was actually from the writer’s real life, though I believe many parts were altered and the new stuffs included. I’m sure I won’t find another film like this any time soon, so maybe I would re-watch it.
> “It’s an awful feeling to love someone so much that you absolutely hate them for leaving you.”
It has been a very long time since I have given a maximum score for a film. When I started to watch it, I did not think it would be the one, but it deserved that honour. The main reason was to I love it, it has no clichés, I mean almost 90 per cent free from them. The first thing was, I though it is a food film and then it turned that down with only required amount of those contents keeping in its narration. Followed by I thought it could turn into a romance, but once again that theme as well sidelined to focus on the different event, I mean the series of events.
So now you might be confused what I am blabbering. Actually, this is the story of a ten year old girl till she reach her middle age and during that period of time, about a man who entered her life and stayed very close despite each other never revealed their personal life. Her school graduate and college days, followed by many events of her personal life as similar to the Mr. Church’s life events at the same time, the film only concentrated the unusual relationship between them. So there’s nothing wrong to call it another version of ‘Driving Miss Daisy’. In fact, it was made by the same director.
Like I said, Eddie Murphy nailed his part. I hope he does more serious films like this and according to his age. I think this is what Adam Sandler should follow as well. The entire story was told from the Charlie’s perspective that payed by the young sensation Britt Robertson. She was good as the Eddie, but her character was not designed to highlight the film, instead her character highlights Eddie’s Mr. Church. She only reveals what she saw with her own eyes about the person she respects, despite it all began with a simple dislike. Beside she never had a father, never knew who her father was, so the Mr. Church takes that place conveniently without their’s knowledge.
A heartwarming drama for the whole family. I did not find any obscene parts. It is now in my all time favourites list. The length was perfect and the pace was excellent. There’s no major twist, like that stuns you at the final stage, but there were many small twists and turns all along. The film critics got all wrong, like usual, they proved they got no brain. This is a inspiring film. You will learn how to respect people around us, who respect us. Like cooking, books, caring for each other, privacy, many fine topics were covered. So watching it with the youngsters and kids might boost their moral attitude. So I feel it is a perfect weekend family film. Highly, strongly recommended.
- Peter McGinn: I never noticed this movie around the time it came out, but I think Eddie Murphy is always worth a look, so I belatedly did just that.
I thought this movie was okay, but it didn’t grab me by the heart like I think it meant to, and I am not sure why. They drew a deep character in Mr. Church, making him compassionate and loyal on one hand, but complex in other ways such as coming home drunk and aggressive. There were a couple other minor revelations about him that never felt tied together or explained to me.
I liked the direction two of the men in Charlie’s life went because of interaction with her, and so it seemed almost wasted to have the father of her child be a throwaway character who didn’t want anything to do with his own child. I guess it was to follow the example of her mother. It seemed like a shortcut in the plot and I wonder if it could have given more tension to bring the fatherhood more into focus.
Still, this was an earnest attempt to make a feel good movie and though I will not watch it again, I will not discourage anyone else from watching it.