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Dinner Rush (2001)


Average Rating: 7.2/10
Reviews Counted: 44
Fresh: 40 | Rotten: 4

Critics Consensus: With the aid of a witty script and a well-acted ensemble, Dinner Rush is a tasty dish.

Average Rating: 7.5/10
Critic Reviews: 15
Fresh: 14 | Rotten: 1

Critics Consensus: With the aid of a witty script and a well-acted ensemble, Dinner Rush is a tasty dish.


Average Rating: 3.8/5
User Ratings: 4,015



Movie Info

Louis attempts to turn his family-owned Italian restaurant, Gigino Trattoria, into a popular TriBeCa hot spot, with the help of his son, head chef Udo.

R (for language, some violence and sexuality)
Drama , Action & Adventure , Comedy
Directed By:
Written By:
Brian S. Kalata & Rick Shaughnessy , Brian Kalata , Rick Shaughnessy
In Theaters:
Jan 21, 2003
Access Motion Picture Group - Official Site



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Critic Reviews for Dinner Rush

All Critics (55) | Top Critics (21) | Fresh (40) | Rotten (4) | DVD (11)

Fiery energy, swift, character-driven chitchat and a tough, upbeat sense of how the world works.

Full Review… | January 20, 2003
L.A. Weekly
Top Critic

Aiello is perfect as the low-key Louis, and there is not a weak link in his entire supporting cast.

Full Review… | July 20, 2002
Chicago Tribune
Top Critic

There are enough plots here to challenge a Robert Altman, specialist in interlocking stories, but the director, Bob Giraldi, masters the complexities as if he knows the territory.

Full Review… | January 18, 2002
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic

Benefits enormously from Aiello's down-to-earth magnificence.

Full Review… | December 28, 2001
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

It's not Big Night, but there's much worth tasting here.

Full Review… | December 21, 2001
Seattle Times
Top Critic

Set in a downtown restaurant, this is a small, well-acted (particularly by Danny Aiello) quintessentially New York film that recalls indie movies of the 1980s.

Full Review… | June 20, 2006

Shares the heady, dizzying atmosphere that turns great meals into memorable events.

Full Review… | October 29, 2003

A genre film, but it tries to tell a story from a different angle - not through tough guys and excessive violence but through a character-driven drama with several different perspectives.

Full Review… | March 11, 2003

This is an unusually patient and composed feature - it's solidly scripted, it knows where it's going and arrives there with a minimum of fuss.

Full Review… | February 13, 2003

The conflict between the 'sausages and peppers' father and his 'lobster in shallot, champagne and vanilla bean sauce' son is just one of many juicy threads running through this Altman-esque banquet.

Full Review… | October 7, 2002
Urban Cinefile

'...beautifully captures the spirit and pace of a popular, bustling eating-house.'

Full Review… | October 2, 2002
FILMINK (Australia)

A movie of rich specifics and stylistic creativity that clearly comes from the heart

April 14, 2002

It's as insubstantial as a plate of linguini, but very, very tasty.

Full Review… | March 18, 2002

Not knowing its story is Dinner Rush's biggest failing--and frankly for as bad as that is, it could've been worse.

January 10, 2002
Film Freak Central

A tasty bit of drama for the adult palate.

January 3, 2002
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

A pleasingly light and mostly tasty dessert.

December 28, 2001
San Francisco Examiner

This is really the first [food movie] to capture the exhilaration of a kitchen sautéing on all cylinders.

December 28, 2001

You can almost smell the garlic and feel the heat of the range.

Full Review… | December 20, 2001
Seattle Post-Intelligencer

The story? Eh. But the food is amazing.

Full Review… | December 13, 2001
St. Paul Pioneer Press

Audience Reviews for Dinner Rush


The actors here deserve more than three stars, the plot just two. I found this just barely above passable for interesting. This movie is about nothing surrounding some art, mafia ties, a few murders, and a little sex at the working place. None of it extremely memorable.

Cynthia S.

Super Reviewer

Cast: Danny Aiello, Edoardo Ballerini, Vivian Wu, Mike McGlone, Sandra Bernhard, John Corbett, Kirk Acevedo, Summer Phoenix, Polly Draper, Jamie Harris, Mark Margolis

Director: Bob Giraldi

Summary: Louis (Danny Aiello) is an aging bookie and restaurateur who's bemoaning the transformation of Giginos -- his restaurant in the TriBeCa area of New York City -- from a down-to-earth, mom-and-pop Italian eatery to a pretentious, see-and-be-seen establishment. To make matters worse, Louis's son Udo (Edoardo Ballerini), a talented chef, wants to take over the restaurant ... as do a pair of thugs who murdered Louis's partner.

My Thoughts: "I was pleasantly surprised by this film. It's not one I planned on seeing. But I am glad I did. There's only a handful of actor's in this that are recognizable for me, but there is great acting by every lead and supporting actor in this. There are many characters in this movie and the director does a great job at playing off of all of them. It's an impressive weaved story. I am still surprised by the ending since I didn't see it coming. It's not your average mob story, but one I enjoyed from start to finish. "


Super Reviewer

Louis Cropa: You know they say revenge is a dish best eaten cold.
Gary Lieberman: Served.
Louis Cropa: What?
Gary Lieberman: Yes sir. Served cold.

A small indie comedy involving a restaraunt and mobsters. Mainly about one long night in a popular New York restaraunt, where we see all sorts of people, the jerks, a critic, chefs, cooks, waiters, and some mob goombas. The food shown being made looks great, and it's hard to see without becoming hungry. A fun movie with some quirks to make it better along the way.

Aaron Neuwirth

Super Reviewer

I was channel surfing when I stumbled across this interesting Independent drama [written by Rick Shaughnessy and Brian S. Kalata] on the Sundance channel. The director Bob Giraldi ("Hiding Out") somehow managed to successfully pull off a realistic restaurant movie with a gangster subplot, all while staging practically the whole film inside or right outside a popular Italian restaurant in Tribeca, NYC.

Great performances by Danny Aiello ("The Last Don", "City Hall","Léon The Professional", "Do the Right Thing", "Moonstruck"), Kirk Acevedo ("Fringe", "The Black Donnellys", "Oz", "Band of Brothers"), Summer Phoenix ("Esther Kahn", "The Believer", "The Laramie Project", "SLC Punk!", "Wasted"), Mark Margolis ("The Wrestler", "The Black Donnellys", "Oz", "Nobody", "Gone Baby Gone"), Vivian Wu ("The Pillow Book", "Song jia huang chao", "The Joy Luck Club", "The Last Emperor", "Shanghai Red"), Edoardo Ballerini ("Boardwalk Empire"- New HBO drama, "A Year and a Day","Protect and Serve", "Life Is Hot in Cracktown","Romeo Must Die"), Polly Draper ("thirtysomething", "Second Best", "A Perfect Fit","My Idiot Brother"- in production for 2011), Mike McGlone ("The Brothers McMullen", "The Bone Collector", "She's the One","The War Within", "The Kill Point"), Ajay Naidu ("Office Space", "The Guru", "The Wrestler", "The War Within", "Today's Special", "Montana"), Manny Perez ("Washington Heights", "100 Centre Street", "Pride and Glory", "El cantante", "Illegal Tender" "Crooklyn"), Jamie Harris ("The Prestige", "Mr. Nice","Rise of the Apes"-2011), John Corbett ("United States of Tara", "My Big Fat Greek Wedding", "Lucky", "The Visitor", "Sex and the City"), Sandra Bernhard ("Roseanne", "The King of Comedy", "Hudson Hawk", "Nice Dreams", "Wrongfully Accused"), John Rothman ("Prime","Welcome to Mooseport", "Reservation Road" , "The Devil Wears Prada"), Walt MacPherson ("Homicide: Life on the Street", "DONNIE BRASCO", "Montana"), and Fanshen Cox ("Gone Baby Gone"). Good cinematography by Tim Ives ("How to Make It in America", "Blue Bloods" - New TV Show).

It was structured almost more like a play than a movie, the performances and pace seemed to reflect that a little, and somehow the formula worked [even though it might be a little too slow for some]. I enjoyed the contributions each character made to the overall plot...there's an old school restaurant owner/recently-retired bookie, two mob goons looking to collect money from the sous chef and possibly take over a controlling piece of the restaurant, a mysterious guy wearing a two-striped tie sitting by the bar all night seemingly taking in the scenery while observing everyone, an arrogant art dealer, a struggling artist/waitress, a cool intelligent bartender hustling people out of money by answering all sorts of questions, a womanizing star chef who comes up with exciting new dishes that woo food critics and make everyone keep coming back for more, a sous chef with a gambling addiction who does most of the work in the kitchen, and a temporary power outage almost serves as a character all it's own. All of these personalities are ingredients that mix together well and make for an engaging albeit slow-paced cinematic dish, with an ending that is a satisfying cold dessert. Overall it's a good drama, old-school film-making at it's best.

Chosen 718

Super Reviewer

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