Many years ago I came back from a film festival and started telling my sister all about this unusual Jane Campion (director) film I saw. When I started describing the plot, my sister stopped me and finished it. I was confused as the film hadn’t even been released to the cinemas yet, but she told me she read a book on which it must had been based. And so it was.
The film I’m talking about is ‘In The Cut’.
I think people expected a thriller but the film isn’t exactly just that. To me it’s not about the plot, it’s about the atmosphere and the way it is shot. Also about the characters which are really well written.
The plot is about a college English professor who gets involved in a murder investigation. I find the film totally fascinating for two reasons. Firstly, I couldn’t forget it for quite a while, the scenes stayed vivid in my mind. Secondly, I find it interesting how everyone sees something different in the film. Depending on the person, everyone notices different things and sees the film in a different way. To some people it is just not a good thriller. Some people concentrate on the sexual aspect of it. Some people see Franny (the main character) as a lonely spinster who is longing for sex and sensuality.
To me Franny is not lonely. She’s interested in words and loves her job, so to me it is her choice to be single. The film has got a lot of sexual content but it is not sexy at all. It’s more about primal feelings, what danger brings in people (quite often it is a need for sex – again, primal needs).
Also, Mark Ruffalo and Meg Ryan are very good. Ryan took a risk to play a totally different character than her usual ditsy, nice, eyes-wide-open girls and she has done a great job. I think it is my favourite of her performances,as it is so different, unusual and a bit weird like the whole film.
The food choice for this movie had to be noodles. Let me explain why. Paul S. is a blogger who writes about Meg Ryan and Michelle Pfeiffer’s films. When I started thinking about ‘In The Cut’ and writing about it, I wondered if Paul had ever written about the film. I visited his blog and I experienced something really spooky. There was a guest review of the film just published. You can read it here.
And because when I think of Paul I think of noodles (long story), I had to make a sort of satay version, if you like.
Satay Vegetable Noodles:
1 tbsp coconut oil
1 green or red pepper
150 g green beans
2 cloves of garlic
2 cm ginger, peeled and grated
1/4 chilli flakes or 1/2 tsp fresh chilli chopped
for the sauce:
1 tbsp smooth peanut butter
1 tbsp tamari
1 tbsp teriyaki
1 tbsp rice vinegar
1 tbsp sesame oil
1. Heat coconut oil in a pan or wok. Add garlic, chilli and ginger. Fry on a medium heat for 3-5 minutes.
2. Cut carrot, pepper and leek into matchsticks. Add to the pan with green beans and fry until softened. In the meantime mix all ingredients for the sauce. Make sure it is smooth (best way is to mix it in a blender).
3. When the vegetables are soft, add noodles (if fresh; if not, cook them first according to the instructions) and sauce. Mix well and serve with your choice of toasted nuts on top (I prefer cashews over peanuts).