What to Watch This Weekend: A Tense Restaurant Drama

What to Watch This Weekend: A Tense Restaurant Drama

“The Bear” will be back with a new season on June 27, but if you crave the adrenaline and misery of a fine-dining kitchen in the meantime, “Boiling Point,” on Netflix, puts its own tasty spin on similar ingredients.

The show is technically a sequel to the 2021 movie “Boiling Point,” a single-shot movie about one catastrophic night at a fancy restaurant. This “Boiling Point,” which aired in Britain in 2023, picks up months later and includes many of the same characters. Urgent moments from the film surface in flashback, but the show feels like a distinct work, not just an iteration in a franchise. Its characters themselves are figuring out how to make something — a restaurant, even just one dish, even just one serving of that dish — that can stand on its own two feet, how to differentiate their work from the output of others.

Our fearless leader is Carly (Vinette Robinson), who runs her kitchen with positivity and support, who believes in both order and praise. She is spread so thin you can see through her, and each passing minute drains her further. Her difficult mother, some rude investors, the squabbling subordinate chefs — everyone needs something from her. She clenches her fists while she sleeps, scowling with worry even while unconscious.

When we meet her, Carly is giving an energizing pep talk and introducing a new chef around the kitchen. It soon becomes clear that he has overstated his qualifications, and things start falling apart. By the end of the night, the social structure of the staff is shattered, and catastrophe and chaos spiral from there for the subsequent four episodes. Nothing seems to go right, so much so that both the audience and the characters start to wonder: Has anything ever gone right?

“Boiling Point” is festive with its dishes, and the ensemble chemistry is top-notch. Its real feat, though, is its sense of strength and failure. Carly and her staff are obviously capable, but it’s never enough. Stress motivates and destroys all the characters here, driving them to addiction, self-harm and exhaustion, but they also come back hungry for more striving, eager for more struggle. One must imagine Sisyphus saying “yes, chef.”

Source Link

You may also like