Thursday, June 02, 2011
Go Easy On The Ham Ramsay!
If Gordon Ramsay ever needed proof that he should get back into the kitchen and do what he’s good at, then he should take a long, hard look at his appalling acting in Love’s Kitchen, a film due out later this month with ‘straight-to-DVD’ written all over it.
It has already been dubbed by some movie critics as “possibly the worst film of the year”, and it’s barely June. It’s a formulaic mess of a tale about an up-and-coming London chef (played by Dougray Scott) who loses his wife in a car crash, and then moves to the countryside to turn a small pub into a gourmet restaurant as he tries to patch his life back together.
He falls in love with a beautiful restaurant critic (Claire Forlani), and is thwarted by a series of moustache-twirling bad guys, who try to drive him out of the village. Then it all ends happily ever after, if you haven’t walked out of the cinema by then.
But if the plot and toe-curling screenplay (“We all value the peace and quiet around here – I hope you’re not going to spoil it” ... “She’s mine, keep your hands off - or things could get really nasty” ... “Who do you think came to the council this morning on your behalf, and saved your bacon?”) isn’t enough to put you off, then Ramsay’s shockingly bad acting will be.
He’s so wooden, you’re half expecting the man from the Ronseal adverts to pop up. In fact, the only thing worse in the film is its original title, No Ordinary Trifle (yes, really!)
And what makes it so dire, is putting the celebrity chef in a film with such experienced journeymen. The exchanges are extremely painful, and I suggest if you are going to waste two hours of your life, then watch it on a plane because at least there’ll be a sick bag to hand.
And that’s what I mean about Ramsay’s out-of-control ego, and complete self-delusion. He has become so absorbed by fame, it makes me wonder if there’s anything he wouldn’t do for cash – however much of a pantomime horse he looks.
Ramsay hasn’t cooked in any of his restaurants for years (not since that lovely money from the TV people started rolling in) – I get the feeling that he somehow sees cooking as beneath him now – but he can still remember how to peel a carrot. And if push came to shove, I’m sure he could still run the pass at Restaurant Gordon Ramsay, if the whole crew were taken ill and he was forced to work behind the stove at gunpoint.
Put Scott or Forlani in the kitchen, and they’d be as useful as a snooze button on a smoke alarm. So what makes Ramsay think he can put on the greasepaint and deliver a credible performance, anymore than Scott could serve up 40 beautifully-grilled lobsters in a professional kitchen?
Ramsay’s done loads on TV – shouting a lot like some strangely camp cartoon villain - but this is acting darling. Whoever cast him is clearly a sadist, but they’ve tried to make it easy for him, and as painless as possible for the long-suffering crew, by getting him to play himself in a sort of inspirational, Looking For Eric-style role as he urges Scott's Rob Haley to put his life back together. However the idea falls as flat as an eggless soufflé, because Eric Cantona can act, whereas Ramsay makes Vinnie Jones look like Laurence Olivier.
The whole thing is awful, and with the trailer they’ve unleashed ahead of its scheduled straight-to-DVD release in the US on June 7, and general release in the UK on June 24, it looks like the whole darn film's been crammed into a long, tedious - but unintentionally hilarious - three minutes.
It’s made me wonder whether Ramsay has actually got any friends left, or whether he’s surrounded himself with sycophants like some paranoiac, tin pot dictator. You regularly see him pictured with David Beckham, watching a game like two old buddies. But why has no-one said to him: “Look Gordon, I don’t know how to say this, but have you thought of laying off for a while...I mean you’re a cook not a fucking actor!”
At the end of the trailer, Ramsay (dressed in whites for some reason) looks straight into the camera, and says: “What the hell are you lot looking at? Get back to bloody work!”
It’s advice he should clearly think of taking himself.
But the funniest thing of all is they’ve spelt his name wrong in the closing credits. Says it all really...
MORE VIDEO: Rusty Ramsay cuts finger on TV