51st Chicago International Film Festival Screening #9: “For Grace” (U.S.)

“For Grace” (U.S.)
Directed by Mark Helenowski & Kevin Pang

chi-for-graceWhen was the last time you saw a documentary about the creation of a restaurant and cried through most of it? Well, this was my first. “For Grace” is a lovely film about a man’s desire to create something totally his own. And the directors have done likewise….made all the more amazing when you consider that they started out making a simple short film for the Chicago Tribune website, when one of the many interviews during the process made them realize they had a much bigger film on their hands.

Chef Curtis Duffy’s story is fascinating, and the directors expertly wend his life story through the creation process of Grace, the Michelin-starred restaurant he creates. The food is gorgeous to look at, the stories and personalities are always interesting if not downright intriguing, and it never ever feels slow. It further differentiates itself from other food docs in that it champions a high school teacher as the major  influence in Duffy’s success…not just the chefs that helped mold him.

And then there’s the Charlie Trotter scene. That’s all I’ll say.

It’s apparently not getting a wide release, but “For Grace” will be going to iTunes and Netflix eventually. Don’t miss it.

Oh, and make sure you have a box of Kleenex nearby.

Written on 10/23/2015

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