The Kitchen (2024)

The Kitchen (2024)

Daniel Kaluuya builds a stunning but unrealized sci-fi world in his directorial debut

6.9

Movie

United Kingdom, United States of America
English
Adventure, Comedy, Drama, Science Fiction
2023
DANIEL KALUUYA, KIBWE TAVARES
BACKROAD GEE, Demmy Ladipo, Ewart James Walters
108 min

TLDR

The Kitchen’s idea of a “dystopian” community just hits too close to home for those of us already living in overpopulated third-world cities.

What it's about

In a future not so far away, London has gotten rid of all of its housing projects except for one: a fiercely resistant and socially vibrant community known as The Kitchen. Just as Izi (Kane Robinson) prepares to leave it for a better life, he runs into Benji (Jedaiah Bannerman), a newly orphaned boy he takes under his wing.

The take

Besides the futuristic tech that pops in and out, there’s not a lot about The Kitchen that signals it as a sci-fi film. Neglected housing projects and violent raids have become too common to count as dystopian, so it often feels like The Kitchen could’ve gone without labeling itself as part of the genre (the real world is bad enough). But underneath those layers is a subtle but sublimely tender story about father and son finding each other amid the rubble of real life. First-time directors Daniel Kaluuya (Get Out, The Black Panther) and Kibwe Tavares delicately balance the personal and the political, never undermining the former as many socially aware films do. If Kaluuya and Tavares had fleshed the world it built a little more and removed the parts, such as the sci-fi elements, that did not work out, then Izi and Benji’s story would have been memorably devastating, instead of just affecting.

What stands out

The evocative faces of Robinson and Bannerman. I’d like to believe there is a version of The Kitchen that is solely focused on their dynamic and chemistry, their back and forths and their soulful eyes. That’s the movie I want to watch! 

Comments

Add a comment

UP NEXT 

UP NEXT 

UP NEXT 

Kill Me If You Dare (2024)

Money pushes a marriage to the edge in this lazily assembled Netflix remake

3.5

Einstein and the Bomb (2024)

A dramatized depiction of Einstein’s own words against Nazism

6.0

Forgotten Love (2023)

The stunning third take of the classic Polish pre-war melodrama

7.7

An American in Austen (2024)

Another half-baked but surprisingly earnest Jane Austen-themed Hallmark movie

5.3

The Guilty (2018)

A minimalist, razor-sharp thriller that will have you gasping for air.

9.0

Thank You, I’m Sorry (2023)

Estranged sisters reconnect amidst grief and bizarre comedy in this understated Swedish drama

6.5

Fan Girl (2020)

A sensational lead performance leads a conflicted but gripping story of toxic relationships

7.5

Last Call for Istanbul (2023)

A seemingly generic Turkish romance travel film, until it gets into its second half

7.0

System Crasher (2019)

A tale of trauma and one of the most talked about movies on Netflix in 2020.

9.0

Taylor Tomlinson: Have It All (2024)

Somewhat predictable stand-up delivered with cohesion and confidence

6.0

Curated by humans, not algorithms.

agmtw logo

© 2024 agoodmovietowatch, all rights reserved.