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Rated R · 102 minutes · 2017
Worshipful but informative biodoc on the culinary superstar casts Tower’s life story as that of neglected rich kid, left to his own devices in hotel and ocean liner kitchens, who parlayed his flair for entertaining into a career as, arguably, the first “celebrity chef,” first at Berkeley’s Chez Panisse, then at Stars in San Francisco. Of the talking heads, only TV gourmet Anthony Bourdain dares to stick the occasional needle in Tower’s balloon – the rest of the experts (Ruth Reichl, Mario Batali, Wolfgang Puck, etc.) tend to fawn over him excessively. Best anecdote: How Tower, at Harvard in the Sixties, showed his student revolutionary zeal by using an Hermès scarf as the wick on a Molotov cocktail. There. Now you don’t have to see the movie. Directed by Lydia Tenaglia (102 min., 2016, not rated) (K.V.)
Director: Lydia Tenaglia
Producer: Lydia Tenaglia and Anthony Bourdain
Cast: Anthony Bourdain, Mario Batali, Martha Stewart, Ruth Reichl, Richard Neil, Shondale Seymour and Tammy Klein

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