Bottle Shock

The 1976 ‘Judgment of Paris’, when French wine experts pitted Bordeaux and Burgundy against rivals from California’s Napa Valley, is one of those underdog tales invented for cinema. In the event, it is and it isn’t, for although rooting against the snooty French is a given, the outcome’s so obvious there’s little surprise, and the shambling set-up means a long haul towards the finale.

Alan Rickman plays Steven Spurrier (the English wine merchant who initiated the event) with a low-key rendering of the actor’s familiar pinched scorn, yet elsewhere the movie trips over a scattering of Californian sub-plots, shuffling Bill Pullman’s vineyard owner, Chris Pine as his son, and Freddy Rodriguez as a Hispanic cellar rat with a patch of his own. Director Randall Miller aims for jollity, but the crass comedy is misplaced, and faking the Parisian scenes a doomed enterprise. The facts pull it through, just.

Release details

Rated: 12A
Release date: Friday March 20 2009
Duration: 108 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Randall Miller
Cast: Alan Rickman
Bill Pullman
Chris Pine
Freddy Rodriguez

Average User Rating

5 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:3
  • 4 star:0
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
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Lucinda

Lovely movie - in the gendre of Sideways and Little Miss Sunshine. Just saw it on a flight - why is it not out in London?

Lucinda

Lovely movie - in the gendre of Sideways and Little Miss Sunshine. Just saw it on a flight - why is it not out in London?