The Cook, the Thief, His Wife and Her Lover Feature film, 1989, 124 min.

Gang boss Albert Spica dines nightly at the gourmet restaurant he owns, “Le Hollandais”. Sitting with his cronies, he is loud and unpleasant as he denigrates the staff and the French chef. While Albert rants on, his wife Georgina secretly begins an affair with one of the restaurant’s regulars and, after a series of short sexual encounters, falls truly in love with him. When Albert finds out about the surreptitious rendezvous in the ladies’ loo, the restaurant kitchen, or the pantry, he is consumed with an insatiable thirst for revenge … Sex, fine dining, and violence – Peter Greenaway directed a painterly studio production in the style of an Elizabethan-Jacobean tragedy of vengeance. The film gave accomplished Shakespearian actor Helen Mirren a stage for perhaps the riskiest performance of her career – one she mastered with bravura. The moving high point of this thespian tour de force is Mirren’s monologue – stripped of all of star designer Jean-Paul Gaultier’s fashion armour, Georgina announces her transformation from an oft-abused, seemingly vulnerable woman to a fearless heroine and victress with the words, “eat, Albert”.

selections & won prizes

DE - Berlin International Film Festival Homage

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  1. Kees Kasander
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NL films selected festival 2020