Urban Planning Issues about the Movie “Julie and Julia”

The Movie Julie and Julia is a comparison between the two cities New York and Paris. It compares the lives of the two ladies Julie and Julia who experience it in these two cities.

The two cities are compared during the same time span and various aspects of the two cities are clearly brought out. Julie works at a call center and most of her work involves receiving complaint about the reconstruction of the world trade center. Julie who is dissatisfied with her job opts to be a writer and uses a book written by Julia which entails the recipes for cooking French food as her reference point. She makes up her mind to become a food blogger. The movie brings out the picture of Paris in the post war period. The city is characterized by elegant cafeterias as well as vintage cars.

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It is presented in such an admirable manner that one would easily. Paris is presented as a city of elegance. Paris is portrayed as superior to the New York City and Julia’s recipes seem to influence the way the residents of Paris as well as the New Yorkers eat. Julie Powell lives in some tiny apartment that is situated above one of the pizza parlors together with her husband and her cat. This is in contrast to Julia’s house which is big enough to accommodate the family together with a maid. New York is therefore portrayed as a poorly planned and congested city which does not have well designed residential areas. The Interpersonal relationships in Paris and New York have been portrayed in two different ways.

Relationships in Paris have been portrayed as more productive than in New York. Julie Powell for instance finds it difficult to please her husband unlike Julia Child. Julia gets much support from her husband when it comes to her career prospects concerning cooking while Julie does not get much support (Powell 200). The French population has been brought out as more appreciative than the American population. Julia’s work is appreciated and acknowledged faster unlike Julie’s work which she struggles to ensure that it is recognized. Julia’s recipes seem to dominate the French parties which were characterized by the attendance of prominent figures at that time. The movie depicts Paris as having wonderful scenes which indicates that it was well designed unlike New York City.

The residents of Paris are depicted as jovial, outgoing and interesting as it is in the case of Julia. The residents of New York on the other hand are depicted as being selfish, dull, dishonest, and profane as well as entangled in self pity as it is the case with Julie who even finds it difficult to interest her friends as well as her husband. New York is perceived as superficial and depended on foreign ideas to make it up for its shortfall. Julie for instance picks up Julia’s work to make sense out of her boring life (Fitch 432).

The Paris residents have been perceived as having a better lifestyle and richer when compared to the New Yorkers. It is for instance difficult for Julie to meet all requirements for Julia’s recipes. While in Paris, Paul Child comes under the scrutiny when he is suspected to be a communist. The investigators consider the employees that have worked in China as being guilty of committing treason. During the McCarthy era, western countries with the U.S included felt threatened by Russia as it was aggressively spreading its communistic influence across many nations around the world.

This is evident in the movie as People and parties that were associated with communism experienced a lot of discrimination which at times involved the loss of jobs and this is evident when Paul child encounters the investigators. Paul and Julia share common opinions about politics and are particularly enraged by McCarthyism when they are subjects of suspicion on the grounds that they have worked in China which was perceived as a communistic state.

Works Cited

Fitch, Noel Riley. Appetite for Life: The Biography of Julia Child. Cambridge: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 1999.

Powell, Julie. Julie and Julia: My Year of Cooking Dangerously. Washington: Little, Brown & Company, 2005.


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