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Like Water for Chocolate

4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (97 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 40.24
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Most helpful customer reviews
A thrilling, intoxicating masterpiece, "Like Water for Chocolate" will leave you hungry, happy and hung over with its surreal vision and unforgettable performances. Some of the film's charm lies in its uncompromising vision of what it must be like to be a poor, Mexican woman, surrounded by angry sisters and petty jealousies. The food is a miracle of texture and authenticity that makes the book a recipe lover's dream. But the spiritual aspects of the movie take it someplacve else altogether....by tying food and unseen forces together, the author and director have fashioned love as a cycle of human emotion coupled with betrayal and passion. Believers and non-believers alike are asked to suspend judgement and just BE with this movie, for it raises issues and themes rarely imagined or acheived on film. A few sequences are startling - such as a wedding party where every guest is gastronimically infected by a soup that is stewed with the tears of our protagonist, and they all end up regurgitating the mixture, and in the end, understanding that true love should not be gambled away for money or superiority. Another sequence, where the middle daughter Gertudis, is literally kidnapped by a horse riding gunslinger while she sits alone in an outhouse doing her business, is hysterical, yet also painful to watch, because it symbolizes the woman's need for free choice in a world where men have so much of the power. Besides, any couple who has eloped or married without their parent's blessings will quickly make the connection to their own experience. If you can keep up with the subtitles, I'd advise against a dubbed version, for in its Spanish - eloquent, funny and dramatic - the film c aptures its truest form of communication. And food as metaphor - used in other terrific fims like "Babette's Feast" - has never been presented in such an awe inspiring manner. This is a feast to be savored every step of its delectible way.
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4.0 out of 5 stars SOMETHING DELICIOUS Oct. 9 2001
By EriKa
This much loved Mexican tale is at once original, vibrant, sensual, funny, and passionate. The premise is simple: a girl, Tita, loves a man (although I cannot think of his character's name now) from the time she is young. He is also desperately in love with her. Tita is mistreated by her mother who insists that Tita's place in the family and in life is to never wed and to take care of her, and therefore prefers the charm of being in the kitchen with her grandmother. Tita learns all the secrets of working magic in the kitchen. Eventually Tita's beloved sister runs away, and the remaining sister ends up marrying the man who is Tita's one true love. This makes Tita desperately sad (and her sadness magically ends up in the food she cooks for the wedding party), but eventually she realises that her man only married Tita's sister in order to be close to her. At some point Tita's mother dies, and this creates a lot of problems for Tita. Throughout the film, Tita's culinary creations reflect the person herself-her sadness, her love, her beauty, her revenge, and so on. The film shows the magic inherent in everything Tita touches. Of course, at some point Tita leaves (if I recall she got very ill-perhaps emotionally ill). Tita ends up marrying a man and having a child. And when her child grows up, he falls in love with and marries the child of Tita's sister and Tita's one true love (the sister's husband). The ending of the film is otherworldly and despite its fantastic elements, very romantic.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Feed the mind and eyes ..... May 6 2001
Like Water For Chocolate is an intense movie. Set in the era of Mexican society during the Mexican Revolution. Those of us who live in an area where real Mexican food is to be savored, know that the Chocolate has to do with the fact that Mexican food often has chocolate in it's non sweetened as well as sweetened form as an ingredient.
The central figure is the youngest daughter in a family with an abusive mother who wants what she wants and what the daughter wants be damned. Much of the film takes place in the kitchen which then as is now in many homes, the center of life. I love the sounds of food being prepared. And while the movie has a dark side i.e. jealousy and passionate sex with good and evil undertones, it also has rich cinema style and is one of those movies where you do not leave the room because you will miss a piece of the puzzle.
Is it a perfect movie? No. But it also isn't the empty head American type either. In fact while it is rich in many ways it is also very simple as well. A Yin Yang balance that for someone who wants a good movie that will whett ones intellectual appetite' as well as feed the eyes, is worth the money.
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1.0 out of 5 stars DELIGHTFUL NOVEL....HORRIBLE FILM Feb. 21 2001
Format:VHS Tape
I defenetly agree with the person who commented before me... READ THE BOOK!!! If you see the video first you might be disappointed. I can assure you that you'll fall in love with this novel from Laura Esquivel, and you might get curious about watching the video (just like me and so many others) but it is a waste of film! Of course some parts from the book are ommited and also the acting is...uh...I can't even explain it's just... pathetic! Bad choice of casting. Pedro, for example, was supposed to be a little more manly and he looked gay in the video, and what's her face...Tita was supposed to be attractive, considering that it was a passionate novel...On the other hand Mama Elena's character was great and believable and so was Nacha's, I love that lady (may God have her in heaven)...and all the rest of the cast was definetly poor, acting wise...I don't know maybe it was just the director, Alfonso Arau. Despite the bad acting, they show good scenery as well as the clothing...very appropriet. But definetly the film needs more emotion in the acting. Unlike the novel which is already full of emotion and if you don't know how to cook you can use it as a reference book. Anyway, I can stay making comments about this novel for a long time but I got class at 9:00(like you care). By the way, those who think that subtitled might be better...you're wrong...it's still bad...and I'm hispanic.
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars I enjoy a good love story
I enjoyed this unusual love story just as much as I first saw it.

If you love a good love story then I would suggest to rent this movie first before buying it, just so... Read more
Published 18 months ago by Mystik
5.0 out of 5 stars Great
This DVD arrived in good time and in Excellent shape.I borrowed a friend's to watch first but wanted a copy to share with my family. Thank You
Published on Dec 4 2011 by Jan Church
4.0 out of 5 stars An endorsement with a caveat.
Note: Although I've only seen this DVD release, and quite enjoyed it, I also hesitate to
recommend it, as I know it has substantial cuts from the original. Read more
Published on May 19 2011 by K. Gordon
2.0 out of 5 stars This movie is "erotic and delectable"?
The story opens on a Mexican rancho in 1910, as Tita is being born. Her harsh mother proclaims that the girl will never marry, but will stay at home and care for her mother all her... Read more
Published on Dec 5 2008 by Kona
4.0 out of 5 stars Food for your heart and soul
When I was in college, I majored in Fashion Merchandising Mgt., and as part of one of my Read/Writing WKSHP courses, I had to read this book. Read more
Published on June 24 2007 by Jenny J.J.I.
5.0 out of 5 stars An amazing body of work
I will admit at the outset that romance style films rarely interest me.
That being said, this film is over the top as far as "reality. Read more
Published on May 24 2003 by Mike
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderfully funny
Don't let the subtitles distract you. Actually they become irrelevant as the movie progresses. It is one of the best movies I have ever seen. Read more
Published on March 28 2003
3.0 out of 5 stars Distasteful Concept of Love
The love story, the core of this film, is just not compelling. She's weak; he's self-centered. She happens to use food to express her suppressed emotions. Read more
Published on Feb. 10 2003 by Aaauger
4.0 out of 5 stars Passion And Mystery
A wonderfully passionate film with the undertones of the mysterious magic that happens in the heart of the home - the hearth. Read more
Published on Feb. 7 2003 by Mystra
5.0 out of 5 stars Read the subtitles
I discovered this book/movie many years ago and it is a wonderful story. I purchased it a few years ago on DVD so I could listen (English dubbing) instead of reading the English... Read more
Published on Jan. 12 2003 by Dee
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