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Reviews: Chef doc ‘The Heat: A Kitchen (R)evolution,’ ‘I Hate Kids’ and ‘Unbridled’

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Suzanne Barr is one of seven female chefs spotlighted in the documentary “The Heat: A Kitchen (R)evolution.”
(Gravitas Venture / Red Queen Productions)

‘The Heat: A Kitchen (R)evolution’

Both awe-inspiring and mouth-watering, “The Heat: A Kitchen (R)evolution” celebrates seven female chefs forging ahead in a male-dominated industry. This documentary argues that the issue isn’t the lack of women in kitchens; it’s the lack of attention they get, particularly from media focused on fine dining.

Director Maya Gallus follows veterans and newcomers alike as they discuss their challenges in frank talking head interviews while she films the action in their kitchens in New York, Toronto, London and Valence, France. But Gallus’ doc not only demonstrates the value that female chefs bring to creative food but also a generally kinder kitchen environment. With “The Heat,” she is actively working to solve the issue of the lack of attention these well-deserving women receive.

— Kimber Myers

‘The Heat: A Kitchen (R)evolution’

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Not rated

Running time: 1 hour, 15 minutes

Playing: Available Jan. 18 on VOD

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‘I Hate Kids’

(L-R) - Rachel Boston and Tom Everett Scott in a scene from the movie “I Hate Kids.” Credit: Freest
Rachel Boston and Tom Everett Scott in the movie "I Hate Kids."
(Freestyle Digital Media)

The silly, slapdash, overly broad comedy “I Hate Kids” finds Nick Pearson (Tom Everett Scott), the author of a popular book called, you guessed it, “I Hate Kids,” about to marry the equally child-averse Sydney (Rachel Boston), when 13-year-old Mason (Julian Feder) shows up claiming to be Nick’s son. That Mason was led to Nick by a fake (or is he?) radio psychic (Tituss Burgess) is the first of many layers of forced inanity piled on by writers Frank Dietz and Todd Traina.

Because Nick’s not really as hollow as he seems, he agrees to help the bespectacled, mop-headed Mason — who’s been living in a dubious foster care situation (not funny, folks) — find his biological mother. Problem is, counting backward about 14 years, Nick was a cad who left behind a string of broken hearts (and apparently spaced on the whole contraception thing), so it’s kinda needle-and-haystack time.

A mini-local road trip of sorts follows that reunites Nick with a bunch of old sex partners who are nutty, slutty or just plain appalled to see him. One has a flamethrower — ’nuf said.

Actions and emotions turn on a dime, chuckles are few and it’s clear this predictable film, directed by John Asher, doesn’t quite realize how retrograde and often offensive it is — which makes it all even worse.

— Gary Goldstein

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‘I Hate Kids’

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Rating: PG-13, for some suggestive material and language.

Running time: 1 hour, 29 minutes

Playing: Starts Jan. 18, Arena Cinelounge Sunset, Hollywood; also on VOD

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‘Unbridled’

T?a McKay in a scene from the movie “Unbridled.” Credit: Cinespots
Téa McKay in the movie "Unbridled."
(Cinespots)

This heavy-handed moral drama is two movies at once — an inspirational story about a young woman triumphing over abuse and a gritty thriller about a teen sex trafficking ring — and neither manages to be very good.

In “Unbridled,” Sarah (Téa Mckay) is rescued from a home with her alcoholic mother (Dey Young) and her mother’s boyfriend, Roger (Eric Roberts), who has been selling Sarah into prostitution. The shy teenager finds solace in a bond with a skittish horse at an equine therapy ranch, but Roger is unwilling to let her go so easily.

John David Ware’s directorial debut is sloppy in its editing and camera angles, though the script from Bonné Bartron gave him little to work with. “Unbridled” stumbles further with clumsy product placement, making the film seem less sincere in its efforts despite its good intentions.

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— Kimber Myers

‘Unbridled’

Rated: PG-13, for mature thematic content including some disturbing images

Running time: 1 hour, 55 minutes

Playing: Galaxy Mission Grove, Riverside

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