Sure, call it a chick flick if you think that damns it to some lower status. Maybe it is one. But I absolutely loved Julie & Julia, which I just saw today. It tells interweaving stories about the formative years of the famous chef on the one hand, and the woman many years later who would base a blog on working her way through every recipe in Child’s cookbook. Along the way we are treated to a jaw dropping impression of Julia Child by the incomparable Meryl Streep, and great performances by Amy Adams and the rest of the cast. It struck me that a great deal of the fun in this film is about the somewhat caricatured yet iconic place Julia Child holds in our culture. Her persona and mannerisms are legend, and the movie even plays to this by having the later characters watch the famous SNL skit with Dan Akroyd as The French Chef. On the more modern end in the character (based on a real person) of Julie Powell, I was moved by the potent idea of doing something for the love of it, and for the sake of having something to do. And through our projects, almost any project really, we find meaning in our way of pushing a rock up a hill only to have it fall back down again. Arriving somewhere is not nearly as interesting as the journey, and taking stock and pleasure in where we are right now.
The movie dovetails nicely with so many of my own interests, spread as they are over the years of my life. From France and French culture, to writing and blogging, this film really spoke to me. And of course one of the greatest elements in the film, taking notice that the love of great food is part and parcel of the love of life and living.