Bottle Shock

Synopsis: In 1976, Steven Spurrier, a sommelier in Paris, comes to the Napa Valley to take the best he can find to Paris for a blind taste test against French wine. He meets Jim Barrett, whose Chateau Montelena is mortgaged to the hilt as Jim perfects his chardonnay. There's strain in Jim's relations with his hippie son Bo and his foreman Gustavo, a Mexican farmworker's son secretly making his own wine. Plus, there's Sam, a UC Davis graduate student and free spirit, mutually attracted to both Gustavo and Bo. As Spurrier organizes the "Judgment of Paris," Jim doesn't want to participate while Bo knows it's their only chance. Barrett's chardonnay has buttery notes and a Smithsonian finish.
Genre: Comedy, Drama
Director(s): Randall Miller
Production: Freestyle Releasing
  1 win.
Rotten Tomatoes:
110 min

[Man Narrating]

It wasn't always like this.

Before Paris,

people didn't drink our wine.

I mean, my friends did, but you could

hardly consider their palates discerning.

Hell, we were farmers, sort of.

## [Rock]

[Man] # When the sun comes up

on a sleepy little town #

# Down around San Antone #

# And the folks are risin'

for another day #

# Round about their homes ##


I guess I'm late.

I told him you were

under the weather.

I don't think he bought that one.


Come on, Ken. You know I don't come

around here asking for money unless I need it.

- What's wrong with the old grape press?

- It's bruising the grapes.

It's not about getting it done.

It's about getting it done right.

It's about making the best

goddamn wine that we can.


I have no interest

in taking your dream away.

But maybe it's time

you look for a new one.

You want me to sign every page?

This is your third loan.

You default,

we take Chteau Montelena.

[Siren Wailing]


Bonjour, madame.

You see, Maurice...

just as Degas used paint...

Rodin used bronze...

Debussy, the piano...

Baudelaire, language...

so HenriJayer and Philippe de Rothschild

used the grape.

Great wine is great art, my friend.

I am, in effect, a shepherd...

whose mission is

to offer the public...

another form of great art...

and to guide...

its appreciation... thereof.

Well, a shepherd...

by definition, needs a flock.

And a business, by necessity...

needs customers.

So, if I were to subscribe

to that proviso...

would you be considered a customer?


No, I would be considered...

an enthusiastic... advocate.


## [Woman Singing In French]

- Steven Spurrier.

- Uh-huh.

[Speaking French]

## [Violin, Piano]


## [Continues]

[Rain Falling]

[Thunder Rumbling]

[Horn Honking]

That's oaky.


Oh, yeah.

And smoky. l-

I detect bacon fat...

laced... with honey melon.

Oh, yes.

And a fine, smooth finish.

- I'm gonna have to make some changes.

- What changes?

I have to actually

sell some wines, for one.

- Why?

- Because this is a business, Maurice!

- Aha.

- "Aha" what?

You've got it all mixed up.

You have L 'Acadmie du Vin...

a school whose mandate,

unless I am somehow mistaken...

is to educate on wine.

And what do you have

on your shelves?

One Chianti and three Rieslings.

The rest are all French.

It might as well be

L 'Acadmie du Vin Franaise.

But even if it was

L'A cadmie du Vin Franaise...

it should seek to present its subject

in a global context.

What about the rest

of the world, huh?

I just read an article

that said California...

is gonna produce wine that will rival

the finest of the French.

And when that happens,

I'm going home.

No offense, but I don't foresee...

the imminent cultivation

of the Chicago vine.

I'm from Milwaukee.

Oh, crap.

Mike, it's not clear.

I was hoping for more.

- [Men Laughing, Chattering]

- Shh, shh.

Hey. We're racking the wine again.

Dad, you gotta be kidding me.

Outside. Now.

No one in the valley racks

more than three times.

- We do.

- [Groans]

Huh? Huh?

- Oh, yeah?

- Yeah.


We've racked the wine five times.

- Come on. Aren't we fighting?

- [Grunting]

Come on. Mike says we're gonna

rack it one more time.

Huh? That chardonnay

has gotta be clear!

Hell, we'll set

a world record then, huh?

- [Groans]

- [Laughs]


Who the hell is that?


[Car Door Opens]

Ah. I made it.

Can I help you?

- Yeah, I'm Sam.

- Yeah.

Your eager and willing intern?

- You're Sam?

- Sam I am.

- Your tire's shot.

- Oh, yeah. Yeah, I know.

But you know what I discovered?

You really only need three, don't ya?

Yeah, I made it all the way from

Fairfield on three, no problem.

Oh, God.

- Ow.

- So, you, uh-you okay?

Yeah, no, no. l-

I mean, " the world

breaks everyone...

and, uh, afterward many are stronger

at the broken places. "

- Hemingway, right?

- Yeah.

Yeah, originally.

But, um, you'll hear my dad say it a lot.

Come here. I just wanna

show you something.

- Just take a second.

- [Horn Honking]

So let's say you're strolling down the street.

Now, which business do you notice?


or mine?

Well, it depends if you're looking for

a bottle of wine or a limo tour of the city.

Well, maybe so.

But Pierre Tari seeks out

my business, not yours.

Promotion, Stevie boy.

That's the key to any

successful business venture.

- Promotion.

- Pierre Tari?

- Yes.

- Secretary general...

of the Association

des Grandes Crus Classs?

Yes again.

Maurice, I have an idea.

- You sure he's in there?

- Absolutely.

Every Tuesday.

My guy, Yves Magnon, used to drive him.

I see him.

[Speaking French]

Ah. Uh-



- Done.

- Wow.

- He agreed, huh?

- He had a couple of stipulations.

- Like what?

- First, I have to come up

with 500 francs by Tuesday.

You mean you have to pay him?

I will be making a charitable contribution

to the federation.

Ah. Hey, maybe it'll get you

a better table at their next dinner.

- Blind tasting, huh?

- Yeah.

Sends out a message of impartiality.

I don't think Tari and the otherjudges

need to see a label to tell the difference...

between a Mouton Rothschild

and a California twist-top red.

If the French lose,

they might bring back the guillotine.

Every great entrepreneurial

inspiration has its risks.

What about publicity, huh?

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Jody Savin

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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