Pressure Cooker (2009)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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Fighting to overcome the challenges of broken homes, abusive pasts, and financial burdens, three inner-city seniors at Philadelphia's Frankford High School find an unlikely champion in the kitchen of Wilma Stephenson. A legend in the school system, Mrs. Stephenson is a force to be reckoned with, and her boot camp method of teaching Culinary Arts is not for the faint of heart. Under her fierce direction, the usual distractions of high school-the cheerleading practices, football games, and school dances-are swept aside as the students focus on preparing for a citywide cooking competition for scholarships to some of the country's top culinary arts institutions.
Documentary , Special Interest
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Critic Reviews for Pressure Cooker

All Critics (24) | Top Critics (10)

The movie's sense of inspiration is realistic. It never implies a future of glamour, only hard-won success.

Full Review… | September 9, 2010
Boston Globe
Top Critic

An earnest crowd-pleaser that could have used an extra helping of dramatic tension -- but it succeeds by placing us in an interesting world with characters who are impossible not to root for.

Full Review… | August 21, 2009
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

Wilma Stephenson...definitely deserves a subtler cinematic testament than this lazily inspirational documentary.

Full Review… | August 20, 2009
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

If the filmmakers do little to expand the vocabulary of the genre, they enhance our appreciation of that most undervalued sector of the American workforce, the city schoolteacher.

Full Review… | July 17, 2009
Washington Post
Top Critic

Pressure Cooker is not about pressure so much as clarity of purpose. It's about a unique teacher's way of building confidence and pride, with results that joyously speak for themselves.

Full Review… | July 10, 2009
Seattle Times
Top Critic

A heart-grabbing, awe-inspiring work that needs no embellishment.

Full Review… | June 11, 2009
Philadelphia Inquirer
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Pressure Cooker

Has this one in my Netflix queue for ages. Basically Spellbound for high school culinary students.

Sunil Jawahir
Sunil Jawahir

Super Reviewer

Shows the power of a teacher who expects a lot, and gives everything. In particular, she allows these kids to dream of a better future and takes them step by step on the path to pursue that dream.

Suzanne T
Suzanne T

To this film was very inspiring because, even though your poor and don't have a good living area you can still do great and achieve your goals in life and be happy. This movie inspiried me so much because I want to be a culinary arts student when i am older and i hope to achieve what all these students have a acheved and be able to work as hard as they di to achieve everything they did.

Ian Machir
Ian Machir

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