Every Flavor Beans: 10 Of The Most Appetizing Scenes In Movies

By  · Published on March 1st, 2012

by David Christopher Bell

Hunger is the reason mankind first decided to kill – one imagines. Surely, the first time someone domed a boar with a stick they didn’t do it just to be a dick about it. This is why when a movie does food right the result is extremely powerful; you can close your eyes and try to forget a sad or scary scene in a film, but if a scene makes you hungry there’s no going back from that.

Here are some scenes that you’ll no doubt wish you didn’t watch – scenes that make you hungry, no matter your preference, because sometimes food just looks good.

10. Phil Stuffs His Face in Groundhog Day

Admittedly, this is more about concept than content in that it’s less so that the food itself looks appetizing and more that the ability to consume immoderately would pretty much change the way life was lived to the extent that fusion power might. Imagine that – life would be one big all you can eat buffet where it mattered: on the inside.

The food does look quite tasty as well, but only really coupled with how guilt-free eating it would be. Lord knows Mr. Bill Murray does his absolute best to make such culinary splendor rest on the side of gluttony with his ultimate cake stuff. He takes that thing out faster than an anaconda eating a baby. We should all be so lucky to shove a cake into our awaiting gapes with such gusto.

9. Remy’s Masterpiece Meal in Ratatouille

Any petite-portioned meal powerful enough to mentally send you into a blissful maternal flashback is probably a decent dish. You don’t really need to know what Ratatouille is to want to gobble it in this scene, the fact that it was prepared by little animated rats seems to make it even more desirable in that it’s probability the only opportunity one would have for such an event to occur in life. After all, this isn’t a Disney universe where mice and birds dress you and squirrels fall in love with you and all that – we’re talking Pixar rules where most rats are running away from sentient toys and cars when they’re not eating bugs that plea for their little bug lives.

The entire movie portrays just how potent this one little rat’s sense of good taste is, and just how good he is at proving it to others when he gets a chance, which isn’t often – so imagine that one meal he finally creates with total power over the kitchen. That has to be friggin’ top notch.

8. Cypher Displays Exactly Why Ignorance Is Bliss in The Matrix

I haven’t eaten meat in exactly 20 years, and I can’t stand so much as the smell of steak being cooked – all true…but I want that fork of meat Baldy McThinbeard is holding. In the context of this film there isn’t a meal more satisfying because every other meal we see before and after it looks like unrefined regurgitation. And the crunch of steak as he chows down – the satisfaction on his face – it just sells that one bite. You completely understand why a guy like Cypher, someone confined to a pretentiously long-named underground space ship, would give it all up.

To be able to sit at a nice restaurant, sip wine, and eat juicy steak and not have to think about how you have like 20 metallic tubes in your naked body while suspended in an H.R. Giger painting is totally an okay desire to have. In fact – why are the humans even resisting? What exactly do they have to win? A clouded sky over cold rocky terrain with one giant hole-city where they can rave dance to their heart’s content? Just go to Russia, guys.

In all fairness, I know nothing about Russia’s landscape or nightlife, but that’s kind of how I always pictured it.

7. Kevin’s Sundae in Home Alone 2

The Home Alone films, while not all that amazing retrospectively, perfectly formed the ultimate childhood fantasy. Not only does our hero get to be left alone for many weeks of unsupervised fun, but also gets to spend some of that time elaborately torturing two adult home invaders. It’s the perfect fantasy because not only does it cast off authority but also actually attacks it in this weird way as Kevin refuses the will of his attackers – one of which actually disguises himself as a cop. The second film takes this even further with Kevin tricking an entire hotel into the royal treatment as well as upping his torture methods in the end. And of course when it’s all over his terrible, terrible parents always come to him in apology – he is blameless.

Sitting in a bed watching films you aren’t supposed to be watching while some adult makes you an ice cream sundae from a cart of decadent toppings and desserts pretty much embodies this ultimate childhood nirvana scenario in one delicious package.

6. The Sci-Fi Kitchen in The Hitchhikers Guide to The Galaxy

Any futuristic culinary practice, save for everything the Klingons eat, is going to be especially appetizing. After all – it’s the future, and in the future everything’s better, right? Okay, unless there are like angry robots or something, but generally if we see some kind of advanced civilization/technology like in Star Trek or Hitchhiker’s Guide, we can assume that the ability to cook good food has also been improved. Such is the case with this kitchen, which can actually sense what you are craving and make it for you – that is when you’re not busy having mini-duels with your bread slicer/toaster laser sword.

However, probably the most appetizing feature of this film is not in the kitchen but rather the bar – where we are introduced to the Pan-Galactic Gargle Blaster, a drink described as being like “having your brain smashed out by a slice of lemon wrapped round a large gold brick.” That sounds awesome! The book goes on to describe this as the “alcoholic equivalent of a mugging,” which, again…just awesome. Space booze is the best booze, no doubt.

5. The Dessert Buffet in Jurassic Park

Click the image above to view the clip on AnyClip

Any dessert buffet is probably going to make you hungry – but this goes double if you’ve spent the last few nights hiding in trees hoping to not be swallowed whole by big genetic reboots of dinosaurs. So it’s really the pay-off more than anything else – these tired little shits have been on a two day trauma hike, not to mention that one of them has been freaking electrocuted, and this right here is their reward – endless fruit and cake.

Additionally – and before I say this, I am fully aware that this could just be me – but the dinosaurs themselves seem like a really good eat. After all – when’s the next chance any of these characters will get an opportunity to eat a dead triceratops or velociraptor? Surely, no matter the taste, the real savor would be getting to live with the fact that you consumed the blood of ancient monsters. If I were on that island I would grab the first available chunk of meat I found on a carcass and stuffed it in my face before someone could stop me. To hell with cooking it – sure you might get sick – but you think Neil Armstrong worried about the risks when he stepped onto the moon’s surface? I think not.

4. Dinner In Prison in Goodfellas

This scene makes me want to put two in the head of the first person I see in hopes that I’ll get put near this jail cell. Even when this cautionary tale rolls credits this is still the main focus of the film to me. Imagine being held in a room with four wise guys whose only activity is to cook delicious food and sit around drinking wine to Bobby Darin like the wonderful stereotypes that they are. That’s like Disney World right there.

Love the fact that Paulie, the boss, is the prep cook in prison. Watching him meticulously slice garlic is no doubt supposed to show his character’s patience and precision but all that is lost the moment our narrator explains how the garlic liquefies in the pan – after hearing that Paulie is simply a hero. Maybe I’m just a lazy glutton but it’s hard to imagine why any of these guys would want to stay out of prison – sitting around in a bathrobe eating food and drinking booze is the American dream in a nutshell, the end result of any hard work – so enjoy it fellas!

3. The Candy Trolley in Harry Potter And The Sorcerer’s Stone

“Magic candy” is probably the best combination of two words in the English language. It also happens to be my DJ name – but let’s not get into that.

The meaning of this scene is just as satisfying as the content in that it’s the first moment when Harry Potter actually has something good happen to him. Well – kind of. He gets kidnapped out of normal life and told he’s a wizard and is given a bunch of dead parent gold but this is the first time we see him spend it on something pleasurable. It’s the first time we see him relax and enjoy himself as a kid. And it’s also the first time we see the awesome applications of magic. Before this all we see is a bunch of beards flying around, stealing luminance and opening brick walls…and that’s neat…but moving frog candy? That’s magic with real world applications. I know those jellybeans leave much to be desired, but it’s not like anyone’s forcing you to eat them – and plus, they do sound like some sick fun. I’d gladly live in a world where jellybeans are made by sadists in order to have chocolate that tries to escape. It’s a fair exchange.

2. The Cookie in Honey I Shrunk The Kids

Screw light sabers – if there were a fictional device we could have in real life, I vote shrink ray. Cutting something in half with light is cool, but that’s pretty much the end of it – imagine being able to shrink your enemies and forever hold them as hamster prisoners. Think about the many bugs you could have them fight Gladiator-style. Think about the fact that every meal would be a feast, as seen in this brief scene where the kids stumble upon the best cookie in the world. It’s glorious is what it is! Giant morsels of sweet, sweet cookie and cream! Seriously – screw light sabers.

One question though – so…after this first film there is still this problem they keep having with accidentally shrinking or expanding things…while there’s not much to be done for the latter – why can’t our hero Rick Moranis build a tiny control panel to put at the base of the machine? That would be like the first thing I would do if my machine kept accidentally shrinking people. That way you could just take care of it yourself. Seriously, Rick – you’re supposed to be the scientist, not me…I’m just a guy who loves cookies.

1. The Imaginary Dinner in Hook

You know, it’s not that this movie was bad or anything – it’s directed by Spielberg and all that – but honestly it seems like if it weren’t for this one scene this movie would have been long forgotten by now. It has everything you need for a scene to make you starving hungry: a character who himself is badly in need of food, a taunting moment of mock eating as the kids gorge themselves with invisible nourishment, and finally a monumental payoff that not only involves delicious-looking real life food but also Seuss-worthy fun-pudding that can only be described as doughy. You can’t deny that pudding – every inner-child watching that is yearning to have it inside them, or at least being flung at them.

You know I want to say more about this – but in all honesty, I have to go eat something before I freak out. In fact, let’s all go have a snack.

Sate your hunger with more Cinematic Listology

Christopher Campbell began writing film criticism and covering film festivals for a zine called Read, back when a zine could actually get you Sundance press credentials. He's now a Senior Editor at FSR and the founding editor of our sister site Nonfics. He also regularly contributes to Fandango and Rotten Tomatoes and is the President of the Critics Choice Association's Documentary Branch.