Too Many Chefs?
No Reservations
Review by Ross Anthony

"No Reservations" seems to have the right ingredients: good actors, good food, a can't miss love story, a surprise child, but somehow someplace in the mix the flavor goes a little flat.

Zeta-Jones earns our sympathy as the highly respected, albeit hard-nosed, chef who undergoes therapy at her boss's request. At the outset, "No Reservations" is a story about her coming to terms with something. Perhaps she'll have a dramatic breakthrough. But as she says herself, "I don't know why my boss wants me in therapy." Sure, when it comes to telling off the patrons, a little counseling wouldn't hurt; otherwise, the cooking appears to be quite fulfilling for her.

Anyway, enter her niece presenting some challenges, which our chef appears to be handling as well as can be expected. Still, we're probably supposed to feel she needs something more in her life -- enter the handsome cook.

So, a story about a top chef with a little girl and a story about the top chef with a love interest. Not that these dramas can't, but they just don't seem to blend well in this picture. There are moments that work -- several moments. But on the whole, this production just doesn't flow well, doesn't drive, doesn't build to climax.

One other hindrance: the heavy-handed score. More than once it creates a mood more appropriate of a supernatural thriller than a romantic drama. Lastly, my girlfriend simply required me to say that the picture on the whole played rather unoriginal. There, now I've said it.

-- Book Contest --


  • No Reservations. Copyright © 2007.
  • Starring Catherine Zeta-Jones, Aaron Eckhart, Abigail Breslin, Patricia Clarkson, Jenny Wade, Bob Balaban, Brian F. O'Byrne.
  • Directed by Scott Hicks.
  • Screenwritten by Carol Fuchs. Based on the screenplay "Mostly Martha" by Sandra Nettelbeck.
  • Produced by Kerry Heysen, Sergio Aguero at WarnerBros/Castle Rock/Village Roadshow.

Grade..........................C+ (1/4)


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Copyright © 1998-2016 Ross Anthony, Author - Speaker - Solo World Circumnavigator In addition to reviewing films and interviewing celebs at HollywoodReportCard.com, traveling the world, composing great music, motivational speaking, Mr. Anthony also runs his own publishing company in the Los Angeles area. While traversing the circumference of the planet writing books and shooting documentaries, Mr. Anthony has taught, presented for, worked &/or played with locals in over 30 countries & 100 cities (Nairobi to Nagasaki). He's bungee-jumped from a bridge near Victoria Falls, wrestled with lions in Zimbabwe, crashed a Vespa off a high mountain road in Taiwan, and ridden a dirt bike across the States (Washington State to Washington DC). To get signed books ("Rodney Appleseed" to "Jinshirou") or schedule Ross to speak check out: www.RossAnthony.com or call 1-800-767-7186. Check out his other sites too: Author*Illustrator*Speaker, Motobookothon 2009, M9, Write Triangle, TwT. Go into the world and inspire the people you meet with your love, kindness, and whatever it is you're really good at. Check out books by Ross Anthony. Rand() functions, Pho chicken soup, rollerblading, and frozen yogurt (w/ blueberries) also rock! (Btw, rand is short for random. It can also stand for "Really Awkward Nutty Dinosaurs" -- which is quite rand, isn't it?) Being alive is the miracle. Special thanks to Ken Kocanda, HAL, Jodie Keszek, Don Haderlein, Mom and Pops, my family, R. Foss, and many others by Ross Anthony. Galati-FE also deserves a shout out. And thanks to all of you for your interest and optimism. Enjoy great films, read stirring novels, grow.


Last Modified: Wednesday, 01-Aug-2007 20:31:42 PDT