Chef Reminds Us Who Is Worthy Of Respect in ‘Pour Retourner’

‘Pour Retourner’ (2014) was directed by Scooter Corkle and written by Zack Mosley. In this film, a prison chef gets a chance at a new life in society when he’s released and finds a chef’s job at a local fine restaurant. The restaurant owner used to work under the wing of the former prison inmate, and is skeptical about hiring an ex-con. But, he takes him on regardless as his new chef.  Things get heated in the kitchen when the restaurant owner becomes verbally abusive to his new employee. As a result, the ex-con chef winds up back at the prison kitchen.

http://www.cbc.ca/player/play/2463093118

To me, this film had a couple of messages. The first was managing one’s frustration with authority figures. No matter how hard we work to do our best, we can never please everyone. But, it can get extremely frustrating when it is someone in authority (whether it’s a boss, client, parent, etc.) who isn’t happy with us.  The main character did an excellent job at keeping his cool – up until his breaking point.

The second message that I picked up on was respect: everyone wants to be respected. Although the main character did his best to earn respect, he didn’t receive very much of it from the abusive restaurant owner. In fact, he got more respect from the hardened inmates than a ‘civilized’ member of the general public. It’s as though his place in life really was in prison, not in free society.

This was a great short film. The tension between the ex-con and the restaurant owner was very powerful – a stark reminder that workplace conflict exists in all sorts of environments. On the flip side, you got a sense that his inmate friends were always accepting of him. It was nice to see them welcoming  our main character back so warmly upon his ‘retourner’ to prison. It’s a nice feeling of camaraderie that can make a workplace feel like a true home.

 

 (Image source: Wikimedia Commons)

 (Image source: Wikimedia Commons)

 

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