Noma: My Perfect Storm shows a chef's struggles

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      A documentary by Pierre Deschamps. In English, Danish, and French, with English subtitles. Rating unavailable.

      In the past decade, chef René Redzepi has led a quiet revolution at Noma, his Michelin-starred restaurant in Copenhagen. Redzepi accomplished two very difficult things: he stuck to a seasonal, locally sourced menu in a country that has roughly six months of winter; more surprisingly, he made Scandinavian food cool.

      Unfortunately, you learn more about his struggles, and his food, in multiple episodes of Anthony Bourdain’s TV series No Reservations and The Mind of a Chef than you do in the 100 mostly flaccid minutes of Noma: My Perfect Storm. Writer-director Pierre Deschamps has a fine eye for colour and composition, but often at the expense of Redzepi’s story.

      Noma went through a small downturn in 2013, following the loss of its No. 1 designation by Restaurant magazine—something Redzepi pretends not to care about. The film follows his crew to England, where they are again vying for the top spot. His presence in the film can be annoying, mainly because he seems to be playing for the camera—swearing randomly with the swagger of the basically insecure. He also picks fights with his staff, who stand around, dumbfounded at his antics. Meanwhile, the food goes cold while we gradually forget why we wanted to know about this guy in the first place.

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