Burnt is an uninvolving redemption story of a jerk, no thanks to its underbaked story, paper-thin characters, and predictable plot.
After the cancellation of Kitchen Confidential after only four episodes, Bradley Cooper is cast as another skirt-chasing, drug-addicted and alcoholic but supposedly talented chef in Burnt.
Cooper has been good at turning jerks into likeable characters ever since The Hangover, making his character believable enough. The rest of the cast also did well.
Burnt is able to portray the ultra-high competitive nature in the restaurant industry – the kitchen scenes look authentic thanks to editing and consultant Marcus Wareing.
Unfortunately, these efforts are wasted on lazy writing.
It’s not clear why orphan turned Michelin studded Adam Jones fucked up his life. There are only vague references to what happened in Paris involving the usual rock star cliches – sex, drugs, alcohol, and betrayal.
As a result, we’re not really sure what he’s being redeemed from. On top of this, his road to redemption is as bland and cookie-cutter as any mediocre Hollywood studio feature.
All the characters are just props – his bad-boy charms can bag any beautiful woman who cleans up his mess, while the men are poor competition. Case in point, Alicia Vikander makes a cameo as the hot ex to pay his drug debts while rival Reece easily accepts defeat and reassures his genius. All Adam Jones has to do is just do what he’s already doing – stay sober and cook – and life will just eventually fall into place.
Burnt is a star vehicle for Bradley Cooper and an attempt to cash in on the popularity of ego-driven chefs, but it doesn’t have anything to make it worth watching.