Chef Gordon Ramsay has gotten fans excited with yet another new culinary competition called “Next Level Chef.”
This competition features three tiers of kitchens stacked on top of each other. The teams who appear on the top tier get the best, state-of-the-art equipment, while the teams on the very bottom have shabby, manual equipment. For example, those in the lowest-tier kitchen are only given a whisk to work with, while those in the top kitchen are given an electric mixer and all the latest tools to create delectable dishes.
If that wasn’t a hard enough challenge, Ramsay also has a “platform,” as he called it, of food that chefs can choose to cook with. The chefs on the top tier of the kitchen have first dibs on the best ingredients. Then, the chefs on the middle-tier are given their pickings of whatever those on the top-level didn’t want. For chefs on the lowest tier of the tower, they are only given the meager scraps left behind by the other two teams to work with.
It’s an interesting premise for a cooking show, but the premise of the “platform” is actually not new at all. It’s actually a plot of a horror film literally called “The Platform” that hit Netflix in 2019. The film first premiered at the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) and won the People’s Choice Award for Midnight Madness.
Is The Plot Of Gordon Ramsay’s New Cooking Show The Same As The Film?
In the Spanish film, directed by Galder Gaztelu-Urrutia, the plot focuses on prisoners in a jail cell set in the future. However, this isn’t an ordinary jail cell. These jail cells are stacked vertically on top of each other. None of the prisoners know exactly how many levels there are in the prison, and only a few dare to try to find out.
The food is distributed on a platform – hence the title of the movie – and works exactly the same way as it does in Ramsay’s new show. The food starts on the top level, where those at the top can gorge themselves on the feast in front of them. The platform stops on each level for a set period of time before it moves down to the next.
As you can imagine, if there are hundreds of levels, how is there enough food for all of the prisoners? The short answer is, there isn’t, and some of the prisoners in the very low levels eventually turn to cannibalism to survive.
Although the plot of the movie is a lot darker than the cooking show, the plot of both is essentially the same: A platform moves down through the center of the floor, allowing those at the top to gather as much food as they want, while those at the bottom are left with what little that remain.
The show was a hit with both critics and audiences alike, earning a 79% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes and an audience score of 72%. Many have praised the film’s poignant critique on capitalism, which seems to be lost in translation when applied to Ramsay’s new cooking show.
Gordon Ramsay Discusses The Idea Behind ‘Next Level Chef’
In a recent interview, the “Masterchef” cook made no mention of the film as an inspiration behind the show. Instead, he said, “I think I gave birth to this show during the pandemic.”
“I had this crazy idea,” he continued. “My career started in the basement. And when I won my third Michelin star, I got to the very, very top—but I still had those cuts of fish and meat that I still have heavily featured on my menu out of respect from starting from the bottom, from a braised oxtail to a mackerel that’s not as glamorous as tuna.”
“So, three kitchens stacked on top of one another, three incredible mentors,” he added. “And then there were the sparks that flew when we put social media cooks together with professional chefs—watching them argy-bargy in the kitchen, it’s brilliant.”
He also compared “Next Level Chef” to its predecessors, saying, “I’m not going to get complacent, but what I am going to do is get creative and take all those elements of ‘Kitchen Nightmares’, ‘Hotel H—‘, ’24 Hours to H— and Back’, and then I sort of look at the food scene in terms of how much more we appreciate good food, and how much money we haven’t got today to cook.”
Fans can watch both the film and the show and make the decision for themselves: “The Platform” is available to stream on Netflix and “Next Level Chef” is available to stream on Hulu.