Babette's Feast (Babettes Gæstebud) - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Babette's Feast (Babettes Gæstebud) Reviews

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½ May 22, 2017
By all rights Babette's Feast should not work for me. I should be reporting that this was a boring and bland waste of time. After all, not much happens in the film, and it is extremely quiet without any excitement. Yet through some strange alchemy that I struggle to understand, it cast a spell on me. It's almost as if the film possesses the same magic that Babette's food held, because it got under my skin and elicited a positive reaction almost despite my reservations.

I thought the acting in Babette's Feast was quite good. It's often hard for me to judge acting quality when everyone is speaking a foreign language, but here there is a lot that is told through silent expressions and that all worked brilliantly. I was also shocked that a couple times the movie got me laughing out loud. It's not really a comedy per se, but there are a few moments that have a comedic edge that worked for me. Many of them come at quiet times, so this would have been a great film to watch with a group to share in the laughter.

The story was a unique one of faith and sacrifice that I connected with in many ways. I liked the structure of the tale, and wondered if there was something more it was leading to, like a dramatic surprise ending. The film does not have those kinds of ambitions, though. It is unassuming almost to a fault. The charm of the story won me over, but Babette's Feast is a rather modest film. As a result it won't fare as well in my ratings and rankings, but that doesn't mean I didn't enjoy watching it a lot.
½ May 6, 2017
Un film noiosetto e che finisce con un finale buonista che non si può sopportare e che affossa anche le ultime speranze di salvare questo film.
March 11, 2017
This is one of those very rare movies that you should watch, at the very least, every ten years if for no other reason than to see how much life has changed you in the years that have passed. I saw it again recently and cried during scenes in which I'd never cried before. It's a measurement of your personal maturation and how the circumstances of life change your attitudes. It's an exquisite movie and I count it amid my favorites!
December 9, 2016
I was completely unprepared for how great this film is. I watched it knowing it had won the Foreign Language Oscar and that it involved food, but I knew nothing else about it. What an amazing film. The story is brilliant and it is perfectly told. This movie is a loving tribute to art, food, and generosity. I will absolutely have to watch this again. Highest recommendation!
Super Reviewer
November 24, 2016
This sublime ode to art, gift, love and grace should be remembered for its wonderful direction and a magnificent narrative that never ceases to surprise us with what it has to offer and the unbelievable amount of depth that it holds in every detail of its apparently simple story.
October 29, 2016
Which was turtle soup, followed by quails. I was totally charmed by the presence of the coach driver sitting in the kitchen throughout
August 31, 2016
A wonderful film about how grace can change everything.
½ January 28, 2016
Babette's Feast focuses on a little town made up of devout Christians who believe in simplicity and regimens. Two sisters meet luxurious men, fall in love, but don't act on their feelings. A woman named Babette comes to town, living with them for many years before revealing herself to be a world-famous cook who makes them a meal as a gift. The town learns to overcome their petty squabbles after eating, for life is worth living and their troubles mean nothing in that context. This is a sweet, simple story and the film comes across as the same. The old ladies are adorable in their staid routines involving mushy bread and prayer, the scenery is beautiful, and the subtle commentary on absolution and balance is wise.

It's easy to see why Pope Francis is so taken by Babette's Feast given his propensity for mixing the old with the new (albeit certainly not perfectly). The film espouses this sentiment exactly, piousness never shamed and gluttony never condemned, because life isn't complete without either. I'm not at all religious, but this simple message resonated anyway.
½ December 28, 2015
Though the movie seemed boring until the mid way, the last two minutes of the movie is legendary. I would watch the whole movie again just to relive those last two minutes.
November 19, 2015
Very understated with its story and production techniques, but this is one of its great achievements. It doesn't try to wow you with the story, nor are there any added nuances to the film to enhance the drama - the result is a very sincere depiction of a time and location not often seen on film.
September 18, 2015
Delightful. Lovely. Even with subtitles, this was magnificent. With the stark cinematography, the slight dreariness, the subtleness of the actors, this was delightful from beginning to end. I loved every minute of it and could watch this one over and over again.
August 31, 2015
A beautiful drama comedy that left a good taste in my mouth.
½ April 6, 2015
The first half of the the Danish movie is a little slow in portraying life of priest's daughters in a small village in Denmark where a refugee from Paris arrived. The latter half is amazing as the refugee starts cooking French dishes in a small home kitchen. Not only the dishes but also the way of cooking is warm and beautiful. That's why this movie is highly rated. The dishes make the edgy and doubtful village people happy.
Lifestyle of village people in Denmark at the time is impressive.
½ March 22, 2015
Another well written Foreign Film that illustrates what is missing in American Film making. A French Chef turned French Maid for a conservative religious sect in an icy wind swept village in Denmark gets one last hurrah when she wins the lottery and prepares a perfect French Meal. Serving this to her pious employers, she shows the food (if done well) can be a transformational religious experience.
February 24, 2015
I was so ready to enjoy. I love the Danish beauty & the moral core of the film. But sadly, it was not to be. It was just so painfully boring. There is no discernible plot. And to the extent that even a hint of one can be found, it's not an interesting one. That's really too bad. Also, it didn't help that the food upon which the whole film was based looked disgusting to me.
December 13, 2014
So charming and such a lovely line of dialogue for its final moment. Simple and very effective.
November 15, 2014
This is one of the most beautiful meditations of life in film. There is no real drama or tension, it simply captures the viewer through great visual shots and the personalities of the characters. Each frame is like a work of art; the music is also enjoyable. The use of the film and the music lead the viewer to an ecstatic experience that transcends human limitations.

The plot in itself is simply the life of two sisters, daughters of a charismatic Christian preacher, who are committed completely to their Christian faith despite the opportunities they encountered to explore outside of those confines. They are from the Lutheran tradition. Years later, a French woman was forced to leave France and ends up with the sisters as a recommendation from an opera singer that visited them earlier. The French woman, Babette, help[s the sister with the cooking so that they can minister to others and also aids them in increasing their income. Babette grows to be loved in the town. One day, she has the opportunity to return to France and she insists on cooking for the centenary anniversary of the sisters' father. The dinner sequence is one of the most mesmerizing sequences in film.

I never thought the culinary qualities and the experiences of the diners could have been conveyed as successfully as done in this film. The meal, by modern standards, might not be appreciated by urban dwellers, but it is incredibly rich for those who can connect to the roots of food and the origins in a farm. Even aspects that might not sound as appetizing for some, are conveyed with great artistry that makes the dishes attractive to all people.

A running theme through the film is the dichotomy between the body and the spirit with the spirit receiving more accolades. Babette, from a Catholic French context, introduces to the small Christian congregation to the sacramental unity of body and spirit; a meal that can nurture the body and at the same time lead the diner to an encounter with transcendence and grace.
October 19, 2014
My all-time favorite movie. So, so, lovely.
½ August 17, 2014
Read the short story. A very faithful adaption!
½ July 13, 2014
A stunning charming film from Denmark that is considered by many the definitive film on food!!! Arguably some of most stunning photography of food put on film.

A simple (arguably slow) story of two woman who serve a religious leader & struggle with their inner desires. One evening a stray French Woman begs her services & they take her in.

Her personality brightens the village & she wants to do the dinner of dinners to thank them. The final dinner scene has some of the most mouth watering dishes...this film is a true delight!
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