Today’s Special is a warm upbeat comedy about (among other things) Indian food. This is not the place to look for suspense or dramatic tension, but if you are looking for cheerful feel-good entertainment this movie delivers.
Samir (Aasif Mandvi) is the sous-chef at a trendy Manhattan restaurant but his career seems to have reached a dead end. He decides to go to Paris to study French cuisine, but before he can leave a family emergency forces him to take charge of his father’s little run-down Indian restaurant. Unfortunately he knows next to nothing about Indian cooking. In desperation he seeks the help of a garrulous taxi driver named Akbar (Naseeruddin Shah) who claims to have been a successful chef in India.
Akbar is the best thing in the move, a terrific character who lights up the screen with his cockeyed optimism and fortune-cookie wisdom. Naturally he sees to it that there is a happy ending for everyone.
This movie is rated R for language–apparently it ran afoul of the rule that says that you can use a naughty word once, but not more than that.