It's so easy to be mesmerized by Chocolat's brilliant indulgences that one abandons reason altogether.
What are people saying?
What are critics saying?
So assured in its manipulative prowess that only afterward do you realize how fully you've been worked over.
Chocolat is a seriocomic plea for tolerance, gift-wrapped in the baby blue colors of a fairy tale and served up with a sybaritic smile.
More sugary than satisfying.
I can only bestow this adaptation of Joanne Harris's bestselling novel with such faint praise as "pleasant" and "mildly disarming."
Certainly satisfies our hunger for a light, bright dessert, yet it may leave you hungry for more.
It's as agreeably sweet as advertised, with a particularly yummy performance by Juliette Binoche.
While there are scenes of wrenching emotional openness and spontaneous charm -- largely due to the irresistible allure and impeccable craft of its ensemble cast -- the degree of calculation apparent in its plot and images undermines its efforts to move and seduce.
Made with a sort of tasteful vulgarity, this movie never disappoints the slack-minded audience's anticipation of the humanistically healing banality, the life-crushing behavioral cliché.
It's built of such exquisite craft -- the acting, the decor, the photography, the music -- that to refuse it is to refuse the very sensations that draw us to art, romance and maybe even life itself.