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Library Film Features Jiro Dreams of Sushi

Jiro Dreams of Sushi is a 2011 American documentary film directed by David Gelb.  The film follows Jiro Ono, an 85-year-old sushi master and owner of Sukiyabashi Jiro, a Michelin three-star restaurant.  Sukiyabashi Jiro is a 10-seat, sushi-only restaurant located in a Tokyo subway station.  Jiro Ono serves a tasting menu of roughly 20 courses, for a total of 30,000 Japanese yen ($281).  The film also profiles Jiro's two sons, both of whom are also sushi chefs.  The younger son Takashi left Sukiyabashi Jiro to open a mirror image of his father's restaurant in Roppongi Hills.  The 50-year-old elder son Yoshikazu, obliged to succeed his father, still works for Jiro and is faced with the prospect of one day taking over the flagship restaurant.

Roger Ebert wrote “While watching it I found myself drawn into the mystery of this man. Are there any unrealized wishes in his life?  Secret diversions?  Regrets?  If you find an occupation you love and spend your entire life working at it, is that enough?  Standing behind his counter, Jiro notices things.  Some customers are left-handed, some right-handed. That helps determine where they are seated at his counter.

“As he serves a perfect piece of sushi, he observes it being eaten.  He knows the history of that piece of seafood.  He knows his staff has recently started massaging an octopus for 45 minutes and not half an hour, for example.  Does he search a customer's eyes for a signal that this change has been an improvement?  Half an hour of massage was good enough to win three Michelin stars.  You realize the tragedy of Jiro Ono's life is that there are not, and will never be, four stars.”

Join us Thursday November 16th at 7:00 p.m.  Ryan Carpe will be leading a brief discussion after the movie.  As always, there will be free theater popcorn, candy, coffee, and Jones Soda.  We hope to see you there!


 
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