Ok, so this is not lying next to my bed right now, but in case you’re interested…
Noma: My Perfect Storm opens with super beautiful, close ups of seasonal produce, still lifes in perfect light celebrating the simplicity of nature’s bounty. There’s no doubt there and then that you are watching a foodie movie but with the voiceover it’s more so apparent that this film is about the personality behind the restaurant, René Redzepi.
Redzepi is a Macedonian born Dane, who, for any one from this side of the globe, is hilariously European. He’s funny in that I don’t give a shit way and he uses English words, that although correct, aren’t quite polite enough for us in the context. He also says fuck a lot, which is very endearing. And he is a prodigal force. Of vision, of creativity, of passion. One of the blessed few who are not afraid to dream big and mean it. A Noma produce grower describes him as youthful man, young at heart, privileged to posses a naivety that allows him to follow his dreams.
Noma has been repeatedly named Best Restaurant in the World and the dishes prepared before your eyes really are mind blowing. The menu is almost 100% Scandinavian based, it’s local and seasonal and totally for real about it. There’s smoke, mousse, broth and petals, every crumb, every leaf, is meticulously selected and curated by the 30 or so chefs and plated into edible masterpieces. It’s enough to make you cry with the pressure of it all, especially with the silent scenes of kitchen action in slow mo.
And Redzepi certainly does put the pressure on his staff. They work hard to put out nothing but the best and he pulls them up when they don’t. The best can only be achieved with heart, soul and utter perfection. This sort of leadership can often lead to a dark place but, for a chef, Redzepi seems calm and appears to put a lot into nurturing the talent of his staff. Working alongside the team are foragers, farmers, fishermen and family, Noma is not a solo project. It’s an indisputable reminder that it takes a team to build a successful enterprise.
There is definitely a cheesy aspect of this film, it is after all the story of an underdog. Classic soul searching moments, heartbreak and success dot the narrative. This is what makes a film like this appeal to a wider audience, not just the food and hopso nerds. If you feel like a dose of life and food inspiration this is a great one to watch.