Chinese Food and Movies
Well, two out of three ain’t bad. I find that when eating Chinese food such as spare ribs, reading a book become well near impossible. So, let’s instead talk about the perfect marriage of Chinese food and the movies, shall we?
There have been numerous movies where Chinese food played a somewhat prominent position. Some of these took place in Chinese restaurants, some in kitchens, and some had take-out food, but it just goes to show how deeply indebted we are to the immersion of this cuisine into our culture. There have also been numerous scenes in television programs, especially ones like N.C.I.S. (where takeout is prevalent), House, Seinfeld, and many others. But, here’s just a few samples of movies that “felt the urge” for Chinese food:
- In 1981, The Four Seasons showed four couples who seemed to spend an awful lot of their vacation time involved with their Wok.
- In 1983, we witnessed the famous Duck Dinner in the Chinese Restaurant, in A Christmas Story.
- One of Taiwan’s most respected chefs is a central character in 1994’s Eat Drink Man Woman.
- 1993 brought us two films that celebrated Chinese cuisine, The Joy Luck Club (with many scenes in the kitchen of a Chinese home) and The Firm (with a rather prevalent Chinese takeout scene).
- In 1996’s That Thing You Do, the deal gets sealed in a Pittsburgh Chinese restaurant.
- Danny Glover and Mel Gibson spent a lot of time around Chinese food in 1998’s Lethal Weapon 4, where Uncle Benny’s front was a Chinese restaurant, and the co-stars spent lots of time pursuing bad guys in and around Chinatown.
- Mickey Blue Eyes (in 1999) had a great proposal scene that took place in a Chinese restaurant.
- To me, one of the most memorable scenes took place in 2001’s Rush Hour 2, which took place in Hong Kong, and had some of its best scenes in a Chinese restaurant.
- And, to show you that Chinese food is often the medicine of choice for eating alone at one’s desk, the 2002 Catch Me If You Can showed FBI Agent (played by Tom Hanks) working on Christmas Day, surviving on some takeout.
These are only a few examples. I’m sure you can think of others. In any case, of all foods in movies, probably only Italian food is shown more than Chinese. So, if you love Chinese food like we do, why not rent some movies and enjoy some Chinese takeout while you watch?
—Mee Rich Yee nee Richard Brody
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