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Chocolat (Miramax Collector's Series) (2000)

Juliette Binoche , Judi Dench , Lasse Hallström  |  PG-13 |  DVD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (661 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Juliette Binoche, Judi Dench, Alfred Molina, Carrie-Anne Moss, Aurelien Parent Koenig
  • Directors: Lasse Hallström
  • Writers: Joanne Harris, Robert Nelson Jacobs
  • Producers: Alan C. Blomquist, Bob Weinstein, David Brown, Harvey Weinstein, Jack Maeby
  • Format: Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Miramax
  • DVD Release Date: August 7, 2001
  • Run Time: 122 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (661 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005K3OT
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #28,036 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Chocolat (Miramax Collector's Series)" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Making-of documentary "One Taste Is Never Enough: The Pleasures of Chocolat" (28 min.)
  • Deleted scenes
  • "The Costumes of Chocolat"
  • Production design featurette

Editorial Reviews

Nominated for 5 Academy Awards(R) including Best Picture, Best Actress (Juliette Binoche -- THE ENGLISH PATIENT), and Best Supporting Actress (Judi Dench -- SHAKESPEARE IN LOVE), CHOCOLAT is the beautiful and captivating comedy from the acclaimed director of THE CIDER HOUSE RULES! Nobody could have imagined the impact that the striking Vianne (Binoche) would make when she arrived in a tranquil, old-fashioned French town. In her very unusual chocolate shop, Vianne begins to create mouth-watering confections that almost magically inspire the straitlaced villagers to abandon themselves to temptation and happiness! But it is not until another stranger, the handsome Roux (Johnny Depp -- SLEEPY HOLLOW), arrives in town that Vianne is finally able to recognize her own desires!

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
68 of 72 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great emotional lift. October 1, 2001
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Lasse Hallstrom's film version of the Joanne Harris' novel Chocolat is as delightful a confection as were the heroines' chocolate creations themselves. The plot is intricate and intriguing, carrying the viewer through the emotional transformations of each of the main characters. In a sleepy medieval French town where life has assumed a repressive structure that has created an emotionally frozen and empty life for even the most highly placed members of its society, the heroine Vianne and her daughter arrive to set up a chocolate shop. With her wonderfully concocted sweets she manages to liberate some of the denizens of the town, revealing their potential for greater happiness. The story has a sense of myth, fantasy, and fairytale about it that leaves the viewer with a feeling of personal satisfaction.

This is a film full of strong female performers. Judi Dench is especially wonderful as a curmudgeonly elderly woman estranged from her daughter and forbidden to see her grandson. Juliette Binoche does a fine job as the heroine. She is as fragile and seductive as Monroe in some scenes and as forceful and independent as Bacall in others. Lena Olin is wonderful as the abused wife who rises from the confusion and ashes of her own ruined personality like a phoenix under the influence of the heroine.
This is one of the best movies I've seen in a ling while, and I expect to order and read the book upon which it was based--something I rarely do.
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117 of 130 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A feel good treat that�s better than the book May 4, 2001
Last year, I reviewed the book CHOCOLAT by Joanne Harris. I'm happy to report that this film adaptation is even better than the print version. And how often can one say that with a straight face?
The film begins with a north wind blowing Vianne (Juliette Binoche) and her daughter Anouk (Victoire Thivisol) into a small French village at the very beginning of Lent, that pre-Easter period of time, which, in the Catholic liturgy, is dedicated to prayer and physical self-denial. It's not a good time for Vianne, an apparent non-Christian, to open up a chocolate shop across the town square from the church. But, she does so anyway, much to the dismay of the village mayor, the Comte de Reynaud (Alfred Molina). Reynaud is puritanically determined to shut the shop down, and Vianne is equally determined to keep it open. An irresistible force meets an immovable object.
CHOCOLAT, both the book and movie, is a whimsical comedy that blossoms as Lent progresses, and Vianne's shop becomes a place of healing and sanctuary for several of the town's troubled residents. Because Vianne's store is seen (by the local Church establishment) as diametrically opposed to the spirit of the season, the story can also be taken as a gentle fable of conflict between Christianity and paganism.
Juliette Binoche is exquisite in her role. (I think I'm in love.) Judi Dench is her usual superb best as Armande, an aged widow deprived of her grandson's company by an over-protective mother, Armande's own daughter (Carrie-Anne Moss). There's also a small role played by Leslie Caron. (Where's she been in recent years?) And Alfred Molina is positively brilliant as the uptight mayor, so dominant that he personally writes the Sunday sermons to be delivered by the local pastor, Fr.
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29 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Melts in Your Mouth, Not in Your Hand November 3, 2001
Format:VHS Tape
Joanne Harris, the writer of the novel, Chocolat, is apparently a confectionery genius, for this story leaves a wonderful taste in your mouth. Although I have not read the novel, the movie is delightfully rich and creamy.
Vianne (Juliette Binoche) is a "chocolatier extraordinaire," having the best chocolate in all of France and possibly the entire world. She and daughter, Anouk, set up shop in a small French village rife with religious zealots led by the mayor, Comte de Reynaud (Alfred Molina), who is intent on keeping the town chocolate-less. It is the timeless game of religious piety versus sincere brotherly love as portrayed in the lead characters.
Vianne seeks to sweeten the lives of the villagers in town with her secret panacea, especially the religious rejects like Armande Voizin (Judi Dench). She is a crusty old woman, the antipathy of her daughter, forbidden to see her own grandson living in town. Moreover, there is an abused wife (Lena Olin), who finds refuge from her husband, not in the church, but in the chocolate shop. And finally, if this is not enough to drive a group of religious fundamentalists insane, there is Roux (Johnny Depp), a member of the River Rats, a nomadic tribe of gypsies, who develops an interest in Vianne. What will become of this little village? Will chocolate win out in the end, or will the town remain a traditional vanilla?
Binoche is sweeter than chocolate in the lead role, and equally impressive is Molina in his role as the mayor. Judi Dench and Lena Olin put in outstanding performances in their supporting roles as well.
This is a movie with substance, dealing with societal issues; and furthermore, showing the power of human kindness and tolerance for those with differing lifestyles. This one melts in your mouth, not in your hand.
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
"Chocolat" tells a fable-like story of a young single mother (played by Juliette Binoche) who, with her young daughter, drifts into a small French village in the mid-20th century. She sets up a chocolate shop, but her efforts to bring some fun to the repressed villagers bring her into conflict with the town's tyrannical mayor (well played by Alfred Molina).
"Chocolat" is beautiful to see and hear. The fanciful sets and the playful score by Rachel Portman enhance the fairy tale atmosphere of the story. Although there are some unsatisfying loose threads in the script, the story as a whole is delightful. And while the film's message--about the importance of tolerance--may be a bit obvious, it's still worth thinking about.
Director Lasse Hallstrom showed his skill at handling a large ensemble cast in "the Cider House Rules," and he does an equally satisfying job here. And what a cast! Juliette Binoche is excellent in the lead role; both elegant and earthy, she is an enthralling screen presence. The great Judi Dench sinks her teeth into a supporting role as a grouchy landlady who has a tender spot for her young grandson. Johnny Depp is charming as Binoche's love interest, and Hugh O'Conor is absolutely delightful as the baby-faced village priest who secretly loves the music of Elvis.
To sum up, "Chocolat" is an appealing comedy-drama with some real touches of magic.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Entertainment at its finest!
You can call it a chick-flick, but honestly guys love it too! Binoche and Depp are both their terrific selves: they portray characters that have layers, depth and emotion --... Read more
Published 22 hours ago by BARBARA VANNESS
5.0 out of 5 stars "...Live A Little!" - Chocolat on BLU RAY
Every one of the dry-as-a-leaf townsfolk in Mayor Comte De Reynaud's sleepy French hamlet "...knows their place in the scheme of things... Read more
Published 2 days ago by Mark Barry
5.0 out of 5 stars Chocolate-Easter Time or Anytime!
One of our all time favorites! Truly romantic, yet funny at times. It's a sure fire movie for a stay at home date! Loved it!
Published 7 days ago by Karen Kraeger
5.0 out of 5 stars great sound track
i absolutely loved this movie and the music doesn't disappoint. it is nice to have on in the background while working, etc. highly recommended.
Published 9 days ago by Mari-Kate
5.0 out of 5 stars Chocolat
I love this movie. It is very unique and timeless which I really enjoy. It made me wish I could open a chocolate shoppe. If you love non conformity, this movie is for you.
Published 20 days ago by Leslie D. Novak
5.0 out of 5 stars Seen many movies, but by far one of the very best
Without a doubt one of my top 5. Timeless classic, it will capture your heart. If you like feel-good, without being mushy, this is for you. It will always lift your spirits. Read more
Published 20 days ago by Larry Blau
5.0 out of 5 stars Chocolat? Yes Please!
Whimsical, magical, romantic, and charming. Chocolat is to light hearted drama what peanut butter is to jam. Read more
Published 22 days ago by P. Murphy
5.0 out of 5 stars Sweet but Tart
There are many lessons to be learned in this sweet story. It really isn't THAT sweet because underneath the story of a woman who rents a pâtisserie and specializes in chocolate -... Read more
Published 26 days ago by LBDDiaries
5.0 out of 5 stars Charming
This charming movie is one of the few that I am willing to watch more than once. It's one of the famed "movies about food" and an easy fun film that will appeal to women... Read more
Published 27 days ago by Plumeria
5.0 out of 5 stars great
Thanks, very good movie. It worked. What can I say. I watched with friends. thank you one more time. The end
Published 28 days ago by Kathleen P. Tate
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