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Julie and Julia - Movie PosterJULIE & JULIA tells the story of two women who were both secretaries for U.S. government agencies, who were both married to great guys, and whose lives were both saved by food.

Julia, of course, is the legendary Julia Child, played exquisitely by Meryl Streep, the woman who popularized French cooking for Americans and who was fearless in the kitchen both at home and on the set of her long-running cooking show on television.

Julie Powell, played by Amy Adams, is the young woman in New York City who decided in 2002 to change her life by giving herself the challenge of cooking all 524 recipes in Julia Child’s cookbook in 365 days and writing about her cooking project on the Internet.

Julie says, “Cooking is what I do to get away from what I do all day.”

Julie’s day job is working for a city agency processing claims from victims of 9/11, and her blog became a book which in turn became the basis for half this movie.

The other half is based on Child’s book, My Life in France, and the film switches back and forth between the two stories in a comic telling of two delightful and fascinating lives.

Julia and her husband Paul, played by Stanley Tucci, arrive in Paris in 1949, and in trying to decide what to do with her time, Julia settles on going to cooking school. The scenes of Julia competing with her all-male fellow students are laugh-out-loud funny.

Equally funny are Julie’s attempts to get through all 524 recipes in one year, but not so funny are the strains that it puts on her marriage to her husband Eric, who naturally has to eat everything Julie cooks, but with help from their friends, too, at times.

Yes, there is lots of eating and lots of cooking in this film; so be prepared to be hungry at the end of it, as well as entertained.

Be prepared for pleasant surprises, too, such as Dan Aykroyd’s portrayal of Julia Child on “Saturday Night Live,” which is still hilarious in spite of its disastrous ending.

We see Julie get her book published, and Julia eventually publishes her famous cookbook with two friends, MASTERING THE ART OF FRENCH COOKING.

JULIE & JULIA is an excellent example of mastering the art of fine filmmaking.

I’m Dan Culberson and this is “Hotshots.”