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Sunday, 24 February 2013

Jiro Dreams of Sushi (2011) - fliXposed... Documentaries

"I would see ideas in dreams. My mind was bursting with ideas. I would wake up in the middle of the night. In dreams, I would have visions of sushi." - Jiro Ono

'Jiro Dreams of Sushi' is a 2011 American documentary directed by David Gelb and edited by Brandon Driscoll-Luttringer.

The documentary centres on 85 year old Jiro Ono, world renowned as the worlds greatest sushi chef, and his sushi restaurant, Sukiyabashi Jiro, which is located at a subway station. The film also examines Jiro's relationship with his two sons, Takashi and Yoshikazu, both of whom are sushi chefs.

Jiro is passionate about sushi and even at age 85 has no plans to retire. He says "If I don't keep on working, my body will become worthless." Jiro has a strong belief in having passion for your field of work, and suggests the number success factor is repetition and perfection.

Did you know...

  • Director David Gelb intended to make a documentary about sushi restaurants in general (called Planet Sushi), but after eating a Jiro's restaurant, decided Jiro's story along would make for interesting subject matter
  • Most of the photography was filmed over the course of one month (January 2010), with ten months of editing

Awards and nominations...

  • US Motion Picture Sound Editors Golden Reel Award nomination for Best Sound Editing (sound effects, foley, dialogue, ADR and music in a feature documentary)
  • Online Film Critics Society Award nomination for Best Documentary
  • Phoenix Film Critics Society Award nomination for Best Documentary
  • Phoenix Film Critics Society Award nomination for Best Foreign Language Film
  • San Diego Film Critics Society Award nomination for Best Documentary

Closing remarks

Watching Jiro prepare sushi is fascinating. Jiro is a perfectionist who meticulously places each element on the dish delicately and beautifully. I felt like I was watching an artist painting a canvas, with Jiro's canvas being his plate, and sushi his paint. These beautiful images are accompanied by a melodious soundtrack, with much of the music composed by Philip Glass.

Despite the simplistic subject matter, Gelp does a superb job in centralising much of the narrative around Jiro's relationship with his two sons, and his relentless approach to perfection.

Jiro's inspirational words of wisdom are powerful and can be applied to anyone regardless if their career path. Although I personally am not a fan of sushi, I found this film to be inspiring and Jiro's creations mouthwatering. Overall, I enjoyed this film very much.

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