Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Brasserie Romantiek

Brasserie Romantiek by Joël Vanhoebrouck

I recently watched Brasserie Romantiek, a 2012 romantic comedy by Joël Vanhoebrouck, with my film-crazed sister Margot. Brasserie Romantiek is Vanhoebrouck's debut feature film and features a large ensemble cast much like Gary Marshall's Valentine's Day and New Year's Eve. The film takes place in a charming little restaurant on, ahem, Valentine's Eve and centers, as you may have guessed, around the unique relationships of the restaurant-goers.

Brasserie Romantiek is exploited by Pascaline (the wonderful Sara De Roo) and recovering alcoholic chef Angelo (a typical Axel Daeseleire). On the eve of Valentine's Day, just when the restaurant is swamped, Pacaline's long lost lover Frank (Koen De Bouw) reappears, reigniting a spark that she thought was gone. In a delicate pace we also get acquainted with the other couples in the restaurant: grown-apart pair Roos & Paul (Barbara Sarafian and Filip Peeters), the nervous Walter and his blind date (Matthijs F. Scheepers and Tine Embrechts), and the disillusioned Sylvia (wonderfully portrayed by Ruth Becquaert), among others.

With Brasserie Romantiek, director Joël Vanhoebrouck has delivered a warm an intimate little gem of a film. The plot is not at all earth-shattering, but the stories are genuine, the storyline is developed masterfully serene, and the actors are top-notch. Brasserie Romantiek is a simple yet tasty dish that I guarantee will leave you feeling fulfilled. Bon appétit!

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