Campbell Scott and Stanley Tucci join to direct Big Night, this
rousing salute to great food and the dream of two immigrant brothers.
Primo (Tony Shalhoub) and Secondo (Stanley Tucci) are brothers who
run a struggling Italian restaurant. Primo is a spectacular chef
who views his cooking as art, and can't understand how the typical American
can be so vulgar as to prefer a side of spaghetti with a dish of risotto!
Secondo is more business-minded, and dreams of the success achieved by
Pascal (Ian Holm), owner of the successful restaurant across the street.
Pascal's heart goes out to the brothers, and he manages to arrange
for legendary jazz artist Louis Prima to visit the brother's restaurant in a
last gasp to stay afloat. The meals and dishes prepared in this film
are enough to make an anorexic's mouth water. The exquisite artistry
involved it their creation pales next to the sheer joy expressed in their
consumption. Stanley Tucci's Secondo is a mostly sympathetic character,
who dreams of success through the talent of his brother, but is also
restrained by the same brother's stubbornness. His relationships with
the women in the film, Phyllis (Minnie Driver) and Gabriella (Isabella
Rossellini) are never developed to a full extent. The film is a bit
slow paced, but it derives such a great joy from its subject matter
that you can't help but walk out craving a great meal.
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