A realistic look at the characters and their growth
Even the supporting cast is brilliant
Make Me A Sandwich
The story-telling tends to be a tad choppy at times
The conclusion could have been a little stronger
Finally, the opportunity to make a joke about women who belong in the kitchen that wouldn’t be as offensive as it would be harmful to the person making that joke.
Adapting the DC/Vertigo comic of the same name by Ollie Masters and Ming Doyle, The Kitchen features the combined star power of Melissa McCarthy, Tiffany Haddish, and Elisabeth Moss as they do a better job than their husbands, and Daredevil, of taking control of Hell’s Kitchen.
Going from being victimised and sidelined as the wives of less than intelligent mobsters, to the queens of the neighbourhood, The Kitchen takes a thankfully serious look at the characters and the premise.
Where it may have been the instinct of any lesser team to take the subject matter in the direction of a comedy, debut director Andrea Berloff, who also penned the script, treats the concept with every bit of gravitas one would expect from a story about people putting their lives on the line for survival.
Not shying away from the possible brutality of being married to a man who livelihood is violence, as well as the fear of raising children in a culture of crime, The Kitchen is every bit the family drama as it can get, but with a heavy dose of badassery.
There is a strong sense of catharsis seeing the women in a mob film come forward and taking centrestage in a non-parody sense. It is especially gratifying having watched McCarthy, Haddish, and Moss from their television roots in the likes of Mike & Molly, The Carmichael Show, and The West Wing.
Where it may have been too easy to be lost in the annals of television obscurity, all three actresses have transited to their own starring-vehicles and are owning the big screen in The Kitchen.
Unfortunately, there remains a sense of choppiness to the story-telling with characters often being introduced far after their appearance, sometimes leaving the audience a tad oblivious to the relationships of the characters on screen. It is dealt with effectively over time, but the sensation of meeting new characters without knowing anything about them is a tad jarring.
While this isn’t always a problem, and could even be chalked up to being an odd choice of stylistic story-telling, the sensation plagues the conclusion to a certain extent as well.
Nevertheless, The Kitchen delivers a great narrative about those deprived of power, and their meteoric rise.