The Kitchen is a 2019 crime film written & directed by screenwriter Andrea Berloff (World Trade Center, Straight Outta Compton, Blood Father, & Sleepless) in her directorial debut. It’s based off the DC Vertigo comic book miniseries from Ollie Masters & Ming Doyle. It was produced by Jason Cloth (Joker, The Addams Family, RoboCop Returns, Assassination Nation, Anna, Child’s Play, & The Mule), Richard Brener (Final Destination franchise, A Nightmare on Elm Street, IT, The Nun, & Shazam!), & Michael De Luca (Leatherface: Texas Chainsaw Massacre III, Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare, In the Mouth of Madness, & American History X). It was the first Rated R film from DC since 2009’s Watchmen. The budget was $38 million & it grossed $15.9 million worldwide at the box office.
In Hell’s Kitchen 1978, three middle-aged women are married to members of the Irish mob. Kathy (played by: Melissa McCarthy from Ghostbusters, The Happytime Murders, Bridesmaids, & The Hangover Part III) is with the respectful Jimmy (played by: Brian d’Arcy James from Dark Phoenix, Molly’s Game, Smash, & Spotlight), Claire (played by: Elisabeth Moss from Mad Men, The Handmaid’s Tale, US, Get Him to the Greek, The West Wing, & Girl, Interrupted) is with the psychopathic Rob (played by: Jeremy Bobb from Jessica Jones, The Son, The Knick, & Manhunt: The Unabomber), & Ruby (played by: Tiffany Haddish from Night School, Keanu, Uncle Drew, & The Lego Movie 2) is with Kevin (played by: James Badge Dale from 24, The Departed, World War Z, & Iron Man 3) who is heir to the mob empire that’s ran by his ruthless mother Helen (played by: Margo Martindale from Sneaky Pete, Dexter, Justified, & Walk Hard). All three men are busted by the F.B.I which includes Agent Gary Silvers (played by: Common from Suicide Squad, Hell on Wheels, Smokin’ Aces, & John Wick: Chapter 2) & they are sentenced to three years in prison.
Little Jackie (played by: Myk Watford from True Detective, No Country for Old Men, Darkness Rising, & The Sopranos) is handling everything for the mob & he gives the girls money since their husbands can’t earn while locked up. Unfortunately, it’s not enough to survive so the ambitious women take matters in their own hands. They start doing their own money collections for protecting the neighborhood with help of some enforcers. Little Jackie is outraged & he decides to go after the women for messing with his business & money. They make a change in management & takeover the Irish mob operations. Enforcer Gabriel O’Malley (played by: Domhnall Gleeson from Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens, Star Wars: Episode VIII – The Last Jedi, Ex Machina, & The Revenant) trains Claire to be stronger & how to kill, they get into a relationship after connecting over it. The women are ordered to meet Italian mob boss Alfonso Coretti (played by: Bill Camp from Joker, Vice, Public Enemies, & Black Mass). The powerful women are nervous about their husbands getting out of prison since so much has changed over the years. All hell breaks loose & they must deal with their past. Can they keep running this business? or Will they give it back to the ones before????
The Kitchen was way better than expected especially after seeing the original trailer various times at the theater. I won’t lie, I was worried about The Kitchen considering both Melissa McCarthy & Tiffany Haddish are known comedians. I thought the original material wouldn’t fit them but I was wrong. They were obviously trying to cash in on their names when they cast them in this but unfortunately that didn’t work at all because this feature ended up flopping. It kinda reminded me of 2018’s Widows when I first heard about it but I honestly thought it was much better than that movie. I love the crime & mob sub-genre but it’s not done enough these days so something is like this is very refreshing to see in the mainstream.The Kitchen was full of violence, I was impressed by the brutality in this. It was very dark, it didn’t hold back at all. Lots of action, it had enough suspense to keep your attention the whole time. I thought the twists were a little too obvious but it could have been worse. I enjoyed how it ended & I was a huge fan of the soundtrack. All three leads gave their best performances that I’ve personally ever seen. I already knew Elisabeth Moss was going to be great in this. Her character went through so many changes in this. I was beyond surprised by Melissa McCarthy & Tiffany Haddish, they both held their own. I took them serious & they definitely proved they had the proper dramatic acting chops for something like The Kitchen. This one had an awesome supporting cast with all kinds of familiar faces like Common, Domhnall Gleeson, James Badge Dale, Brian d’Arcy James, Jeremy Bobb, Bill Camp, Margo Martindale, E.J. Bonilla (Gemini Man), Myk Watford, Wayne Duvall (O Brother, Where Art Thou?), John Sharian (The Machinist), Annabella Sciorra (The Sopranos), Pamela Dunlap (Wiseguy), & Brian Tarantina (Donnie Brasco) in his last performance (R.I.P). This is one of the strangest entries that you will see from the DC Universe but it’s a welcome change & I personally really enjoyed this feature. RECOMMENDED!!!!
Let’s talk about the high definition presentation from Warner Bros! This 1080p (2.40:1) transfer looks stunning on blu ray. It really captures the late 70s on the east coast in New York & the time when the mob was running everything. It has a variety of audio options which includes English: Dolby Digital 5.1, English Descriptive Audio, & French: Dolby Digital 5.1 on the release. All the dialogue is crystal clear, the violence is elevated, & the music sounds amazing here! It also has English SDH, French, & Spanish subtitles.
Let’s discuss the special features from Warner Bros on this upcoming blu ray! “Running Hell’s Kitchen” is a little over 9 minutes. It has interviews with director Andrea Berloff, producer Michael De Luca, creators Ollie Masters, Ming Doyle, actors Melissa McCarthy, Tiffany Haddish, Elisabeth Moss, Common, Domhnall Gleeson, James Badge Dale, & various members of the production. Andrea Berloff chats about wanting to finally direct & this was the perfect material to start out with. Shes says she loves the mob sub-genre. They talk about the original comics & how they couldn’t wait to turn it into a film. They mention that most of the set had women working on it doing jobs that they usually didn’t a chance for. They bring up the set design & the costumes for The Kitchen. They chat about the cast & their chemistry. They talk about working with first time director Andrea Berloff. “Taking Over the Neighborhood” is a little over 5 minutes. It has interviews with director Andrea Berloff, actors Melissa McCarthy, Tiffany Haddish, Elisabeth Moss, Common, James Badge Dale, & Brian d’Arcy James. They chat about New York. They talk about transforming it back to the 70s. They go into the history of it & how Hell’s Kitchen belonged to the Irish. They bring up true events that they made sure to feature in the production. They mention a funny story with confusing a local after changing it up for The Kitchen. A little over a minute “Deleted Scene”. It’s a scene between James Badge Dale & Tiffany Haddish after a major event takes place in the movie. It also includes a slipcover & a digital copy. It’s available everywhere right now, CHECK IT OUT!!!!