32 of 34 people found the following review helpful
The Way to a Man's Heart is through..............
, August 31, 2001
The director, Maria Ripoll and the screenwriter, Vera Blasi had an uphill battle to say the least when they decided to adapt the incomparable Ang Lee's "Eat Drink Man Woman" to the screen with their "Tortilla Soup." Martin Naranjo (Hector Elizondo) is a master chef, though semi-retired from the restaurant he created, and living with three daughters: Leticia (Elizabeth Pena), the oldest and a high school chemistry teacher, Carmen (Jacqueline Obrados), an MBA and very successful in business and Maribel, in high school and searching for the "meaning of life" as all teenagers should be doing. This film is very much like "Soul Food" in that most of the action revolves around the dinner table with luscious-looking food designed and prepared by the "Hot Tamales" of Food TV fame. And like Ang Lee's film all the daughters and their father are searching for love, happiness and contentment.Aren't we all? There is no violence except for a few dishes that get broken. In fact nothing much happens except we are made privy to several interesting people and watch as they conduct their lives in a rich, deep and fulfilling manner. Besides Elizondo who always does a great job, the standout performance has to be Jacqueline Obrados as Carmen. Keep your eyes open in the future as I'm sure we are going to see great things from her. An interesting note: Nikolai Kinski, grandson of the famous Klaus and son of the also famous Nastassia plays Maribel's boyfriend, Andy. That's three generations of Kinski's now in the movies and Nikolai makes a good impression in a basic no frills role. Food means love, sharing and camaraderie in "Tortilla Soup," (Mexican characters) as it did in "Soul Food"(African-American characters) and "Eat Drink Man Woman" (Taiwanese characters). Maybe the United Nations should make note of this. You think?
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