We are at the midpoint between Christmas and Christmas, so turkeys are enjoying a ghost season in Hollywood. Revenants to the feast, they are re-available to critics for roasting or stuffing. Chef is a comedy with barely a laugh, written and directed by Jon (Iron Man) Favreau. Favreau himself – funny a generation ago in Swingers – plays the gourmet Los Angeles chef disenchanted with five-star cuisine who decides to go “simple” with a Cuban-sandwich travelling food truck. Great idea! Out of the haute cuisine into the high cholesterol! Help fat America get fatter!
Even at home chef Favreau plies his poor kid (inserted in the script for a schmaltzy father-son bonding plot) with toasted cheese. If there was witty dialogue we’d put up with the gastro-philistinism. But the script is as malnutritious as the anti-gourmet sermons. Co-stars John Leguizamo and Bobby Cannavale try hard to be funny to prop up a filmmaker-star barely trying at all.