24 Jun

Men in Black

“You’re no longer part of the System. You’re above the System. Over it. Beyond it. We’re ‘them.’ We’re ‘they.’ We are the Men in Black.”

Zed

Summer is here, and you know what that means: we’re going to get a ton of sequels, prequels, and reboots hitting the big screens every week, and Munch is going to be going back to the originals to see how they stand up. This week, we’re diving into Men in Black, by request of friend of the blog, Max Stowell.

We decided to hone in on one specific scene for food inspiration: the diner scene. Two Arquillians, disguised as humans, discuss the fate of the Galaxy in a little polish restaurant, before Edgar comes to murder them both and steal it away. But we don’t care about all that. We care about the would-be last meal of those two poor aliens.

Of course, there are the pierogi. It is hard to describe the love we have for this food. The best way we are able to sum it up is to share this screengrab of the Arquillian Prince when he finds out his friend ordered pierogi:

For our Pirogi, we started by making the dough, which is just milk, water, egg, salt, flour, and the secret ingredient, sour cream. We rolled the dough out and filled it with a potato/cream cheese/mozzarella filling, then pinched them closed by hand. After a quick boil, we fried them in butter and served them with more sour cream and bacon. They were delightful; a last meal fit for a prince.

Of course, you can’t have Pirogi without a little side salad. We put together Sur√≥wka, a Polish salad consisting of carrots, apples, and sauerkraut. It was refreshing, sweet, and sour, and paired nicely with the Pirogi.

We noticed the scene was a little smokey, and decided that had to be due to the fact that they were serving smokey cocktails and has nothing to do with the fact that this movie came out prior to the restaurant smoking ban. We also strongly associate coffee with diners, and looked for a way to combine those two themes. We came across momma’s breakfast smoked cocktail in Imbibe Magazine, and thought it would be perfect. While you’re shaking together cold brew, cinnamon syrup, rum, and cardamom bitters, you torch a pinch of whole cloves and stick a glass over it. The result is a smokey scent that pairs perfectly with the spicey flavors in the rum and cardamom bitters.

Finally, we served up a dessert inspired by the galaxy charm worn by the most important character in the movie: the cat. We made chocolate mousse frozen in a half circle mold then topped it with a mirror glaze, which is really just white chocolate and gelatin. The flavor was just okay, and definitely not worth the effort and precision it takes to make a mirror glaze, but it looks cool?

The Reviews:

Andr√©: I think the Neuralizer worked on me. I found Men in Black to be ultimately forgettable. While Will Smith was fun to watch and the special effects were pretty decent for its time, I wasn’t blown away. For most of the movie, it didn’t really feel like it had a plot. Edgar was just kind of wandering around and the MIB were also just existing. It wasn’t until the end of the movie that the rush for the galaxy really kicked into gear, but even then I had a real hard time caring. It felt like a McGuffin: a plot device all the characters want and we’re just supposed to accept that they want it without a good reason. I always thought I was missing out by not having seen this movie and now I feel like I wasn’t missing out on anything.

Leanna: Consider me the newest member of the MIB fan club. Maybe it was just the right people in the room and the right number of smoked cocktails in my stomach, but I had an unexpectedly fun time watching this movie. And this movie had a lot to prove with me considering the first time I watched it around when it first premiered, I had to turn it off and stop watching because I was so upset after the diner scene when the cat’s owner is murdered. Who will feed him? Where will he live? How will he get pets? Distraught, I could not continue. Had I, I would have seen that the cat actually goes on to play a pretty important role, and by now you should all know how I feel about cats. Also, Will Smith’s wardrobe department was having a great time, and I loved all of their choices.

Ben: 70%. As low as that score may seem, I actually enjoyed a lot of what Men In Black had to offer. It feels unique, has a lot of opportunity for genuine comedy, and has this nice 60s future charm to it. It holds it together for the majority of the run time, but when the novelty and newness of everything start to fade away into your typical action movie fare, my enjoyment of the movie starts fading with it. The idea of aliens existing and cohabiting with us is so incredibly interesting, and the finale uses none of that. And with the reception to Men In Black: International, it is unfortunate that it doesn’t seem like we will get another opportunity to see what stories could be told in that universe in the near future.