As a followup to the Top 5 “Food Movies” post, here’s our best of list for “Food Scenes” from the silver screen. There are so many great ones, but here are a few of our favorites:
1. Gray’s Papaya Picnic on a desert mesa – Fools Rush In
You betcha – the NYC legend of hot dogs gets shipped across the country in the name of love! This is the way to a man’s heart, ladies. Incidentally, this movie is full of other great food scenes, including meeting your future wife while waiting for the restroom at a Mexican restaurant, a pregnant pizza dinner in a half-built nightclub, a tamale-centric family fiesta with an unexpected guest, and of course – a Cinco de Mayo debacle involving insults to the guacamole.
2. The Fake Orgasm – When Harry Met Sally
Sally makes her point in front of the lunchtime rush at a busy New York deli. Writer/Director Rob Reiner’s mother chimes in with “I’ll have what she’s having,” to put a somewhat cheesy (but still hilarious given the context) end to a classic food scene.
3. Michael’s Initiation – The Godfather: Part I
When Michael Corleone kills Sollozzo at Louis’ Italian Restaurant in the Bronx, he’s gone past the point of no return when it comes to the family business. Fittingly, this character transformation takes place in a sleepy family run joint in the Bronx. The scene was shot at an old place called Luna Restaurant, and apparently featured the real-life proprietors of said restaurant.
4. The Milk Check – The Big Lebowski
However subtle it may be, the opening scene of The Big Lebowski find The Dude in the supermarket dairy section, opening a carton of milk for a quick taste test to ensure the freshness that is essential for a great White Russian, only to proceed to the checkout with milk mustache in tow. This is perhaps the perfect way to introduce the character.
5. Bad Dates – Raiders of the Lost Ark
Again, food plays a quick supporting role here, but the tension created is genius. You see an assassin poison the bowl of dates right before Indiana grabs one to munch. Indiana all but eats the date a few times while chatting with Sallah, always interrupted by something. He finally gets a moment to eat, launching the date into the air. Sallah grabs it just before it drops into Indy’s mouth, quipping “bad dates” as he looks over at the dead monkey next to the date bowl. Good old Sallah, always getting Indy out of trouble!
Another top 5 is on the way, but instead of film we’ll focus on beer pairings!