The Hundred-Foot Journey (Blu-ray Review)

The Hundred-Foot JourneyStarring Academy Award(R) winner Helen Mirren (Best Actress, THE QUEEN, 2006), produced by Steven Spielberg, Oprah Winfrey and Julia Blake, and directed by Lasse Hallstrom (CHOCOLAT), this uplifting story bursts with flavor, passion and heart. When the chill chef proprietress of a Michelin-starred French restaurant in southern France (Mirren) gets wind of a culinary immigrant opening an Indian restaurant just 100 feet from her own, her icy protests escalate to all-out war between the two establishments. It’s a celebration of triumph over exile as these two worlds collide and one young man tries to find the comfort of home in every pot — wherever he may be.  

The Hundred-Foot Journey


The Hundred-Foot Journey tells the tale of an immigrant Indian family who has set up shop, so to speak, in a little French town in the South of France. Papa leads the family (Om Puri) and he brings along his sons and daughters along. They have actually left England where they had previously set up their shop near Heaththrow airport, and prior to that they were in in India, where they had to flee due to tragedy. Hoping to start fresh Papa decides to open up an Indian restaurant right across the street from Madam Mallory’s (Helen Mirren) Michelin Star French restaurant.

 Tempers flare and Madam Mallory declares war on the family by undermining their every move to prosper in their culinary ventures. What Madam Mallory doesn’t know is that Papa’s son Hassan (Manish Dayal) is an expert chef who has a knack for creating some of the family’s traditional Indian dishes. Hassan is also a curious fellow and envisions learning how to cook real French cuisine. He’ll get that chance with Marguerite (Charlotte Le Bon), who initially helped the family out of a jam when they first arrived to the small town.

Hassan wanting to learn the ways of French cuisine puts a wedge in his family’s relationship especially his father, because now his father thinks that he is a sell out or traitor. He feels that he should stay true to his Indian roots and focus on Indian cuisine and the family business. Hassan has more ambitious plans and will put it all on the line.

I saw The Hundred-Foot Journey with my girlfriend back in the summer time not knowing what it was actually about until I looked it up. It was my girlfriend’s suggestion, so I went along with it. I’m glad I did, because seeing it at the theater was great as the locales, food, characters, were all brought to life in this lush and tranquil setting. Seeing it on Blu-ray that feeling I had back has not quite diminished even though certain parts of the film are a bit cliché but forgivable.

The true stars of the film are indeed the culinary delights from both countries and cultures. I dare you to not be hungry after this. In fact, I double dare you. It seems that 2014 was the year of the “foodie” film, with Chef also bowing in theaters. I have not seen Chef as of this writing, so I can’t comment on its merits. The last film with relation to food that I saw was Ratatouille.

Another thing that actually bugged me when I watched the film on Blu-ray, and it did bug me in theaters, was the resolution of a particular character arc that was played out a wee bit too convenient for my taste, because in context it was a very big deal and a problem, but by the end of the film the problem was resolved. It was played out in an almost afterthought fashion. It was a very head scratching type of moment and I will not tell you what it is, because it’s a spoiler.

I should also mention that Steven Spielberg and Oprah Winfrey – their first collaboration in 30 years, produced The Hundred-Foot Journey. Lasse Hallstrom directs from a script by Steven Knight (Redemption, Locke) and it’s a very simple and entertaining film. I enjoyed it quite bit minus what I mentioned above and think you will too. It is available on Blu-ray and DVD now.


The Hundred-Foot Journey



Encoding: AVC MPEG-4

Resolution: 1080p

Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1

Clarity/Detail: You know when it comes to films that revolve around food I have always noticed that the transfers are presented in exquisite fashion. This is no different. The level of clarity and detail is superb. Contrast has not been tinkered with and neither has the sharpness levels.

Depth: The film takes place in several different parts of the world and you will feel like you’re actually there thanks to the reference transfer on this Blu-ray. I want to live in that small French village myself.

Black Levels: Black levels are strong and were absent of crush and compression artifacts.

Color Reproduction: The color palette is epic and wait until you see the various ingredients used in making some of the dishes. The herbs and spices really leap out at you.

Flesh Tones: Everyone looks nice and healthy and they should, because they’re eating natural food.

Noise/ Artifacts: I did not notice any unwanted noise, debris, and artifacts at all. The Hundred-Foot Journey looks great on Blu-ray!

The Hundred-Foot Journey


Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD MA 5.1, English Descriptive Audio 2.0, French Dolby Digital 5.1, Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1,

Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish

Dynamics: With compliments from the chef this is very bombastic lossless soundtrack to go with the reference video. They pair together nicely. There’s one scene in the film that nearly shook the house down and it’s during Papa’s construction of the restaurant where he has some Indian music pumping through a stereo. It literally enveloped the entire sound stage. It was really cool and it really brought you to their world.

Low Frequency Extension: The LFE channel did its job and it was a great job indeed. It only shook the foundations of the house when it needed too.

Surround Sound Presentation: The Hundred-Foot Journey has a very robust soundtrack and a very aggressive rear mix that handles music, ambience, sound effects, with great ease.

Dialogue Reproduction: This is a dialogue driven film and the center channel reproduces the many languages spoken throughout without any problems.

The Hundred-Foot Journey


The Hundred-Foot Journey has a few extras but outside of the superb recipe video they are light and a bit too self-congratulatory.

  • The Hundred-Foot Journey With Steven Spielberg & Oprah Winfrey (HD) – I thought this conversation would be neat, because initially I didn’t even know that Spielberg and Oprah were even involved on this project. I expected a bit more from this piece but it was mostly fluff as both continuously praise each other for being who they are.
  • The Recipe, The Ingredients, The Journey (HD) – This is short making-of documentary and we are taken behind the scenes of what went into the making of the film. There are interviews with the director, producer, author, screenwriter, etc. It’s not a bad piece but it is relatively short.
  • On Set With Oprah Winfrey (HD) – Here’s a small clip of Oprah visiting the set and visiting with some of the cast and crew. That’s literally all it is.
  • Coconut Chicken (HD) – This is my favorite special feature – I forgot I was even watching a recipe video, because I’m used to watching Robert Rodriguez’s recipe videos on his movies and not something like this. This is a recipe for Coconut Chicken and I have taken down the list of ingredients and will be making this dish sometime in the next couple of days. It looks great!

The Hundred-Foot Journey



The Hundred-Foot Journey is a culinary adventure from the heart where culture transcends all and transmutes into food. Yes, it has a bit of cliché throughout but it has a lot of heart. You also can’t go wrong with some of the dishes on display. The Hundred-Foot Journey is recommended.

Order The Hundred-Foot Journey on Blu-ray!

The Hundred-Foot Journey


Gerard Iribe is a writer/reviewer for Why So Blu?. He has also reviewed for other sites like DVD Talk, Project-Blu, and CHUD, but Why So Blu? is where the heart is. You can follow his incoherency on Twitter: @giribe

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