The Kitchen review: A Dystopian Tale of Struggle and Resilience

The Kitchen Review

Welcome to our review of “The Kitchen,” a thought-provoking film set in a near-future dystopian London. Directed by Oscar-winning actor Daniel Kaluuya and Kibwe Tavares, this film explores the themes of affordable housing, inequality, and the resilience of the human spirit.

In this review, we will delve into the film’s plot, performances, direction, and overall impact.

A Futuristic Housing Project

In “The Kitchen,” the story revolves around Izi (played by Kane Robinson), who lives in the Kitchen, a futuristic housing project that has become a world of its own.

The Kitchen is a towering structure, reminiscent of Hong Kong’s former Kowloon Walled City, where the city’s poor community resides. However, the Kitchen is not just a place to live; it is also a frequent target of brutal police raids, adding to the tension and sense of urgency throughout the film.

Izi and Benji: A Bond Amidst Turmoil

The narrative takes an interesting turn when Izi crosses paths with Benji (played by Jedaiah Bannerman), a recently orphaned young boy who starts to cling to him. As they navigate the challenges of their environment together, a bond forms between them.

Izi finds himself torn between his plans to leave the Kitchen and his growing sense of responsibility towards Benji. Their relationship serves as the backbone of the film, showcasing the importance of human connection in the face of adversity.

Direction and World-Building

One of the film’s strongest assets is the direction by Kaluuya and Tavares. They skillfully create a visually immersive experience, capturing both the kinetic energy of intense scenes and the quieter moments that offer glimpses into the characters’ inner lives.

The world-building in “The Kitchen” is particularly noteworthy. The Kitchen itself, with its stacked buildings and neon-lit underground parties, feels both gritty and vibrant, reflecting the stark contrast between poverty and resilience.

Attention to Detail and Realism

“The Kitchen” avoids falling into the trap of portraying poverty as a one-dimensional tragedy. Instead, it embraces the complexities of life in the Kitchen, highlighting the resource restrictions, over surveillance, and the day-to-day amusements that exist within the community.

The inclusion of touches of Black culture, from freestyle battles to roller rinks and soulful needle drops, adds depth and authenticity to the film.

Performances and Chemistry

Kane Robinson delivers a compelling performance as Izi, portraying the character’s cold exterior and inner turmoil with authenticity. Jedaiah Bannerman shines as Benji, bringing a sense of naivety and childlike openness to the screen. The chemistry between Robinson and Bannerman is palpable, making their bond believable and emotionally resonant.

Script Complexity and Untapped Potential

While “The Kitchen” excels in many aspects, the script occasionally becomes tangled in its own complexity. It introduces several loose ends that are left unanswered, leaving the audience craving more closure.

At times, the film bites off more than it can chew, hinting at potential sequels but neglecting to fully explore the rich world it has created. Despite this, the emotional payoff of the relationship between Izi and Benji compensates for some of these shortcomings.

Conclusion

“The Kitchen” is a thought-provoking film that tackles themes of inequality, resilience, and the power of human connection. With its immersive world-building, strong performances, and skilled direction, it offers a unique and engaging cinematic experience.

While the script may stumble at times, the emotional journey of the characters and the film’s overall impact make it a worthwhile watch.

FAQs

1. Is “The Kitchen” a science fiction film?

Yes, “The Kitchen” falls under the genre of science fiction. It is set in a near-future dystopian London and explores futuristic elements such as advanced technology and a unique housing project.

2. Are there any plans for a sequel to “The Kitchen”?

While “The Kitchen” hints at potential sequel material, there have been no official announcements regarding a follow-up film. The focus of the movie remains on the relationship between Izi and Benji and their struggle within the Kitchen.

3. Where can I watch “The Kitchen”?

“The Kitchen” is currently available for streaming on Netflix. You can enjoy this thought-provoking film from the comfort of your own home.