After watching “Uncut Gems” a fair share of times, I gained an appreciation for a masterfully done dramatic thriller film. That is exactly what “Boiling Point” is. This film was released in 2021, and was directed by Philip Barantini.
This movie is shot in a single take, like “1917”, and uses this technique to drive your heart into your throat. I was choking out of anticipation by the last minutes of the film. It has a run time of 92 minutes, which feels incredibly short while watching it.
This is Barantini’s second feature length film and it is his most successful. The main actors are Stephen Graham, who plays Andy Jones, Vinette Robinson, who plays Carly and Alice May Feetham, who plays Beth. The movie is set in a London restaurant focused on head chef, And Jones’ ability to handle the heat of his personal life and kitchen life in a single night.
This movie is quite intense and uses extreme language as it is set in the high seas of a foul mouthed kitchen.
I don’t want to talk too much about the plot of this movie because that is the driving force behind the tensions and heart pounding story. Basically, Andy Jones comes into his restaurant and immediately faces barrages of inquiries that make him feel overwhelmed.
His front of house (FOH) manager, Beth, is already up in his business when he walks in the door, which makes it hard for Andy to even have a calm moment to prepare for the busy night. Also, his sous chef, Carly tells Andy about issues and new trainees that are happening while he deals with management issues from Beth.
I always start to perspire when I think about how long of a night this kitchen staff has after the closing of a restaurant. Platter after platter of drama piles up, and by the end of the film it feels like there is no way for Andy to resolve the mess he has gotten himself into.
Having this film be shot in a single take is astounding to me. Not only does every single actor have to be sharp and attentive for the entirety of the film, but the crew has to be prepared too. Plates of food are brought out and fires extinguished constantly. Barantini really does make you feel like you’re in a kitchen with a time bomb strapped to it.
Having sweat slide down my forehead while sitting and watching a movie is never something I thought I would recommend, but the ache in my heart from anxiety I got watching the film was intoxicating.
Stephen Graham and Vinette Robinson are also fantastic throughout the entire film. I could absolutely believe them in their roles. Carly and Andy play off each other so well, it feels like real kitchen experiences I’ve had myself.
The more I thought about this film as a representation of kitchen life and stress, the more I began to enjoy it. Films and directors that are able to focus on a few key emotions instead of a spectrum of feelings, keep me involved and invested during and after the viewing. I feel like I learn something about someone’s life perspectives by taking in their sights, sounds and frustrations with their world around them, which is exactly what “Boiling Point” does.
– DJ Chef