Dir: Kern Saxton
Starring: Noah Hathaway, Tony Todd, Mark Hamill, James Duval, Andy Mackenzie
The best way I can describe Sushi Girl is to say that it is deliciously fucked up. Some of the films cast members whom I had the pleasure of meeting liked that description, and in discussing the film with them I could really see how passionate they were about it. The passion for this rather messed up affair is very evident within the film as well, it was something I could really feel and that passion really connected with me.
In some ways I felt that this film was made especially for me, it is right up my alley as a film fan. I enjoyed the film immensely and my entire Sushi Girl experience was fantastic.
Sushi Girl is a dish best served raw, meaning that the less you know the better the experience. So I will keep things brief as far as plot points go, I want others who see this to have the same kind of fun I did. The story starts out with Fish (Noah Hathaway) who has now left prison, where he had just served time to do with a diamond heist. Duke (Tony Todd) the boss of a group of guys (that included Fish) has set up a unique dining experience in order to discuss the diamonds from the heist and things are not looking good.
I love independent cinema, it contains some amazing gems that are always ripe for discovery. Sushi Girl is clearly an indie crime/thriller/horror film, made with passion and it really takes no prisoners. This is a film built with dialogue and a situation we get to discover by listening, and the clues are there if you pay attention. The characters are all unique and they each have their own chemistry between each other, I was intrigued through out. Part of the film is that we feel danger for each of our characters and the dining experience also feels dangerous because there is a naked woman covered in sushi.
This is a gorgeous looking film, it is beautifully shot and each scene was nicely layered and set up. The colour palette was perfect also, I loved the use of colour and how it seemed to fit nicely with each segment. The script written by Kern Saxton and Destin Pfaff is very intense and engaging, it was nicely plotted and set out. Kern who also directed did a fantastic job, I felt as though he knew what he wanted and he got it.
The cast here just shines, this amazing group worked so well together and meeting a number of them in person together I could feel their chemistry and their genuine friendships. Tony Todd is a man with an amazing voice and presence, he does a good job of keeping Duke mysterious and his motives not quite obvious. I don’t think I have seen him give a mediocre performance, he puts everything in each and every time. Welcome back Noah Hathaway, and what a way to make an impact back into the film scene. He has always shown he is an incredibly talented actor (just watch him as Atreyu in The Neverending Story), and this certainly pushed him to his limits and he delivers the goods.
James Duval is one of my favourite actors and he was great here, I really liked how he handled his character and I could see the effort he put in and certain things he wanted to get across. Andy Mackenzie was great, this is the guy I want to have on my team, to put it quite frankly he is a bad ass and it is convincing. This guy needs to be in a lot more stuff, people pay attention! Perhaps the most surprising was Mark Hamill, I honestly did not even recognise him until he had been in the film for like 10-15 minutes. He is a true chameleon, he can disappear into the role and he is incredibly engaging. This film really hit the nail on the head with its casting and major props to Cortney Palm as the sushi girl who was fantastic and also for the cameos.
At the end of the day this is a great film in my humble opinion, I had a blast with it and it has a high rewatch value for me. I can’t say it is a film for everyone because we all feel differently, but it is certainly worth giving a chance on, it may surprise you.
The Australian DVD
The DVD I reviewed was a screener, so I am unable to comment on Picture/Audio quality.
DVD details here.
Thanks to Bill care of Gryphon Entertainment for the copy.